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Colorful Metaphors Options
Epiphileon
Posted: Wednesday, July 24, 2019 4:26:59 AM

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That is how Mr. Spock describes profane expletives in the fourth Star Trek movie. For whatever reason of my experiential background, my language is usually rife with these when in the company of people whom I know will not be offended by them; however, that is not always the environ in which I feel the need for such emphatical verbal tactics. Of course, it has been rare over the last 20 years that I have not been in the company of people I am comfortable with so I have not been hard-pressed to come up with acceptable alternatives but, the need arose again today and I was curious what other people thought of the notion of the usefulness of such expletives and what nonprofane examples they are aware of or could come up with.

I know there are numerous examples of such nonprofane phrases, I'm not sure that many of them still have that certain quality of, not exactly sure what it is that imbues them with their, as Mr. Spock would say colorfulness, maybe it is some sort of shock value on the basis of the bizarre imagery they invoke. For example, "Why don't you take a flying leap at a rolling doughnut!" One of the few nonprofane phrases I know to exist. The problem with the existent set of nonprofane examples that I know of is that most of them are either hackneyed or have lost the quality that makes them truly useful.

Anyway, I thought it might make an interesting conversation. What are your thoughts on the general idea? What existant phrases are you aware of? And what, if any, would you come up with to add to the compendium of nonprofane colorful metaphors?

Question authority. How do you know, that you know, what you know?
FounDit
Posted: Wednesday, July 24, 2019 1:59:38 PM

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I’ve been trying to think of some I may have heard, but haven’t had any luck at that. Like you, I haven’t had need for such euphemisms with most of the people I deal with, or simply don’t engage in conversations that would require them. I did once borrow a very old one from Mark Twain on farting, describing it as Aeolian crepitation, but like the type with no sulfur, there was no reaction, as the person I was talking to had no idea what those words meant.

The only exception I can think of is a conversation I once had where I was speaking without monitoring what I was about to say and was on the verge of stating that a certain person had his head up his ass. At the moment of saying that, I hesitated because of who I was speaking to, and, drawing on my long interest in Anatomy and Physiology, said the person had his head embedded in his alimentary termination point. It took a moment for the mental picture to develop, which then elicited a demure smile.

What makes such euphemisms popular, I think, it the humorous picture they call to mind, and the crafty interplay of words to accomplish that. Most, however, as you say, have become hackneyed with use, and few new ones seem to be in the making. But there are always wags among us, so there will, no doubt, soon be more flowing from some creative minds. But it may be that once others begin to post some, if they do, it will trigger some memories.


We should look to the past to learn from it, not destroy our future because of it — FounDit
Absurdicuss
Posted: Sunday, July 28, 2019 10:55:31 PM

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The only phrase that comes to mind: don't get your panties in a wad. Does that qualify?

"Now" is the eternal present.
FounDit
Posted: Sunday, July 28, 2019 11:56:57 PM

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Absurdicuss wrote:
The only phrase that comes to mind: don't get your panties in a wad. Does that qualify?


I think so, and I believe the British version is "Don't get your knickers in a twist". But as Epi says, these have been around for a while and there doesn't seem to be any new ones being created.

We should look to the past to learn from it, not destroy our future because of it — FounDit
Hope123
Posted: Monday, July 29, 2019 11:00:27 AM

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Location: Burlington, Ontario, Canada
Epi,

I'm sure I've seen some new ones on Twitter but I can't remember. So I just asked a few minutes ago and I'll get back to you if they come up with anything worthwhile.

One of the things I like about Twitter is that there are some very intelligent critical thinkers who are up to date on current events AND history. I learn a lot by checking out if what they say is true in research (same as I used to learn a lot on the Forum) and some of them have a really good sense of humour. I get a lot of really good belly laughs. There are some good people on Twitter.

I use the knickers in a knot - sometimes oldies are goodies.

BTW - I do not use my real name, birthdate, or post personal info or photos on Twitter so I am not concerned about Twitter mining my personal data. And I do not follow people who use profane language or ad hominem,

"The louder he talked of his honor, the faster we counted our spoons." Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)
Hope123
Posted: Monday, July 29, 2019 1:00:58 PM

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Location: Burlington, Ontario, Canada
So far only one answer. I have not heard the exact phrase before but assume it is old. Go pound salt.

However, I asked a legitimate question of someone who had "satirical irony" on his profile and I wanted to know if what he said was true or irony.

I saw my question today and thought maybe it could be a new way of saying you disapprove.


Is this for real or part of your "satirical irony"?

:::

Edited to include the original tweet. I can believe that our recent high school dropout Conservative Premier of Ontario Doug Ford is this stupid but didn't know if it actually happened.

After pronouncing his own cottage area "one of the greatest places in Ontario!",
@fordnation is asked when he'll make his first visit to the Northern Lake Superior area.

Ford responded, "I hear that's a great area too, but I'm trying to focus on Ontario here."


Lake Superior IS in Ontario.

"The louder he talked of his honor, the faster we counted our spoons." Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)
Epiphileon
Posted: Tuesday, July 30, 2019 6:15:47 AM

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Thanks folks, I have heard most of these.
FounDit I would have missed Aeolian crepitation as well. After looking it up I get the crepitation part but am left wondering whether the people of the Aeolian islands are known for their gaseous emanations. "Head embedded in his alimentary termination point" is well said although I think it points out another subclass of the overall class as those used within a specific group of common knowledge.

Absurdicuss, yes, panties in a wad is definitely a colorful metaphor drawing on the creation of a bizarre visualization to achieve its effect.

High Hope, I've heard go pound salt but not since I was a wee laddie*. Although I thought I knew, basically, what it meant I looked it up. I was in the ballpark but had no idea of the actual origin.
Quote:
Origin: Apparently, “Go pound salt” is the less vulgar version of “go pound sand”. The origin of the expression “go pound sand” is from a longer expression, “not to know / have enough sense to pound sand down a rat hole.” Since filling rat holes with sand is menial work, telling someone to pound sand down a hole is like telling them to go fly a kite.
From HOT Idioms, an interesting site.



*The apparent spontaneous use of "wee laddie" reminds me of another way in which we use imaginative metaphors for emphasis. One of my grandma's favorite phrases to indicate something happened a long time ago was, "Not since Christ was a kid and the devil was a wee laddie!" When something occurred in the early childhood of someone that was when they were "knee-high to a grasshopper."

Question authority. How do you know, that you know, what you know?
FounDit
Posted: Tuesday, July 30, 2019 12:01:06 PM

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Epiphileon

Well, I wasn't thinking of the Aeolian Islands as much as the Greek god of wind, Aeolus, who "kept the violent Storm-Winds locked safely away inside the cavernous interior of his isle, releasing them only at the command of greatest gods to wreak devastation upon the world." (Actually, that sounds like a pretty good metaphor for those stored in the intestinal tract also.)

Your "knee-high to a grasshopper" did remind me of another one I used to hear in earlier years about an exceptionally heavy rain, referred to as a "frog strangler".

Another more colorful one was "raining like a double-bladdered cow pissing on a smooth, flat river rock". There is a more vulgar version (using the C-word), but I'll leave that one to your discretion.

Then there is another one for something that is smooth: "finer than frog's fur", and its superlative: "finer than frog's fur split four ways and sanded". That's taking it to the extreme, however, and seems unnecessarily complicated.




We should look to the past to learn from it, not destroy our future because of it — FounDit
Epiphileon
Posted: Wednesday, July 31, 2019 2:35:06 PM

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Joined: 3/22/2009
Posts: 4,171
Neurons: 157,514
FounDit wrote:
Well, I wasn't thinking of the Aeolian Islands as much as the Greek god of wind, Aeolus,

Well that certainly makes a lot more sense.

As for the others you mentioned I only vaguely recall, that I have heard something akin to the frog strangler but, those are all very colorful metaphors.


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