The Random Comic Strip

The Random Comic Strip

Words to live by...

"How beautiful it is to do nothing, and to rest afterward."

[Spanish Proverb]

Ius luxuriae publice datum est

(The right to looseness has been officially given)

"Everyone carries a part of society on his shoulders," wrote Ludwig von Mises, "no one is relieved of his share of responsibility by others. And no one can find a safe way for himself if society is sweeping towards destruction. Therefore everyone, in his own interest, must thrust himself vigorously into the intellectual battle."

Apparently, the crossword puzzle that disappeared from the blog, came back.


Monday, September 29, 2014

The Button-Down Mind Of Douglas*


Button up your overcoat
When the wind is free
Take good care of yourself
You belong to me



Have you ever considered that phrase? Button up??? Who does that? I don't, I button down. It's an old habit. When I button a shirt or a windbreaker (a jacket... even though it sounds like it's a description of a rude person) or an overcoat.. something I've never owned, I start at one button down from the top and button down. But that doesn't trip off the tongue like "button up" does.

 
Other inane phrases come to mind. "Room and board", for example. Wiki explains it thus:

"Board" refers to the table on which food is served. Historically, "in a modest house, the table, or 'board', might have been provided with stools for guests but just the one chair with arms, which was reserved for the household's head. The original 'chairman of the board' was literally so seated on a chair while everyone else was on a stool..."

Perhaps it was also just a board, a plank, along which stools were placed. I can picture that... food placed, buffet-style, on this board that might rest upon wooden barrels. At least, that is what comes to mind when I hear or see that phrase.

We "turn a blind eye toward" whatever we do not want to see or know about.

"In one ear and out the other" is another commonly used phrase that defies reality.

Also, "get on a plane." I don't know about you but I like to get in a plane... it would be very cold and windy to be on it.

"A penny for your thoughts." That has become something of an insult. A penny is useless these days except when calculating sales tax... something that has led to a small basket or other container for pennies near a cash register because who carries pennies around these days?


*A reference to "The Button-Down Mind of Bob Newhart"

2 comments:

Tom Sightings said...

Well, if you've ever paid for your kid to go to college, you know they're not using wooden barrels (maybe wooden kegs?) to eat their meals. They get sushi, gluten free, and a lot of other stuff I can't afford to eat at home.

So ... where does "The whole nine yards" come from?

Douglas said...

Google "whole nine yards" and read the rather interesting attempts to examine its etymology of the phrase at Wiki... It seems to have no discernible origin.
I thought college students survived on pizza and beer?