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Music – “Let’s Spill The Beans” from Radio Broadcasts (1935-1936) by Ray Noble & His All-American Orchestra. Released: 2011
It occurred to me some time ago that so many of the idioms and catch phrases I’m accustomed to hearing are associated with food and I wondered why that was. I mean, when was the last time you heard someone say, “she’s as cool as an iceberg” or “the proof is in the cat’s food”. Is it possible to “cry over spilled thumbtacks?”
Just why foods have become so entrenched in so many of the idioms we casually throw about is intriguing. Envision the following conversation between two friends out to lunch (excuse me, make that “out for lunch”):
“I wish I hadn’t ordered the halibut. It’s really not my cup of tea and I wouldn’t order it again for all the tea in China”
“Oh, you’re just being a bad egg. By the way, did you hear that Henrietta spilled the beans on Richard?”
“No, but as far as I’m concerned he’s nothing but a couch potato and he thinks he’s a big cheese. I don’t really think he’s a bad apple, but he’s certainly not worth his salt.”
“Comparing Henrietta and Richard is like comparing apples and oranges. He drinks like a fish and Henrietta doesn’t seem to give a fig about it.
Since Richard lost his job as a bean counter, he’s not bringing home the bacon anymore and Henrietta’s not sure where their bread and butter is going to come from now.”
“Even so, Henrietta says he’s still spending a lot of money on his souped up hot rod and she’s afraid that if they had to sell it to make ends meet, they’d get peanuts for it”.
“Well, I’m sure that’s true: hot rods in their neighbourhood aren’t exactly selling like hot cakes and I’d be afraid of buying a lemon from Richard. I’m afraid that they’re in a bit of a pickle right now.”
“Richard never could cut the mustard, as far as I’m concerned and he’s a bit of a dreamer, you know, pie in the sky attitude. In fact, since I’ve known them, I’d never describe them as two peas in a pod”
“For sure, butter wouldn’t melt in his mouth, but I feel sorry for Henrietta, who always tries to project this cool as a cucumber attitude.When they got married, she knew he was as nutty as a fruitcake, but she told me some time ago that she didn’t see the point in crying over spilled milk.”
“Richard may be sour grapes for the most part and I think that Henrietta is starting to think she may have bigger fish to fry.”
“But walking out on a marriage is not as easy as apple pie, nor is it a piece of cake. Henrietta’s not one to be left with egg on her face.”
“All I know is that Richard recently threatened her with a knuckle sandwich and she called the police. Well, whatever happens, I hope she can take it with a grain of salt. I guess you can’t have your cake and eat it too”