Trump walked in like an elephant in a china shop

Nicole Wallace on Morning Joe uttered this nice malaphor.  It is a mashup of “bull in a china shop” (one who is aggressive and clumsy in a situation that requires care and delicacy) and “the elephant in the room” (an obvious truth or fact that is being intentionally ignored or left unaddressed).   Not sure what would cause more damage in a china shop – a bull or an elephant? By the way, elephants are a common source of malaphors: just type the word “elephant” in the search engine on my website and you will find a treasure trove of elephant malaphors.  a big thanks to Donna Calvert for hearing this one and passing it on.

Want to see more elephant malaphors?  Chedk out my book, “He Smokes Like a Fish and other malaphors” and see a whole chapter devoted to pachyderm mashups.  Available on Amazon for a cheap $7.99.


The Republicans run cover for Trump

Political pundit Charlie Sykes uttered this one on MSNBC’s Hardball (hosted by the Malaphor King, Chris Matthews – see website for the many contributions).  This is a mashup of “run point” (take the lead) and “give cover” (protect from attack).  Perhaps Mr. Sykes was thinking (or hoping) about “running for cover”, but there is no indication any Republican is doing that at this point.  A big thanks to Frank King for hearing this one and sharing it.


He tried to steal the wind out of your sails

The submitter’s wife was talking about someone who was going to upstage him.   This is a nice mashup of “steal your thunder” (garner the attention or prasie that one had been expecting for some accomplishment) and “take the wind out of your sails”(diminish one’s enthusiasm about something).  Both phrases involve taking away something from someone.  Also, sails and wind often are accompanied by thunder, right?   A big thanks to Martin Pietrucha for  hearing this one and passing it on.


What a flash from the past!

This was uttered in response to finding a  cake topping used in childhood.  It’s a congruent conflation of ‘blast from the past” and “flashback”, both describing something that evokes a sense of nostalgia.  “Blast” and “past” are similar sounding.  A big thanks to Nick Mamalis for saying this one and Elaine Hatfield for sharing it.


middle of the ground

The speaker was talking about taking a centrist approach.  This is a nice mashup of “middle ground” (compromise) and “middle of the road” (moderate or centrist).  Both idioms have the word “middle” and both describe the center of something, hence the mixup.  A big thanks to Katie Norwood for uttering this one and sharing it!

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Let’s kick this down the line

The Queen of Malaphors, Naomi David, is back!  She uttered this beauty, which is a mashup of “kick this around” (mull over or consider something) and “down the line” (in the future), creating a definition of thinking about something for the future.  She may also have been thinking “up the line” (through the chain of command).  And of course she may have been thinking of “kicking the can down the road” (avoiding making a decision) although I believe the context was brainstorming.  A big thanks to Katie Norwood who passed this one on.


We’re as thick as two thieves in a pod

This one comes from the tv show Scrubs.  While intentional, it’s a classic malaphor and worth posting (although it does go against the rules that the malaphor spoken or written should be unintentional).  Still, too good to pass up.  It’s a mashup (of course) of “thick as thieves” (a close alliance or friendship) and “like two peas in a pod” (similar interests or beliefs).  This one works on many levels – similar idioms, and the rhyme of “peas” and “thieves”.  A big thanks to Elly Pietrucha for spotting this one on a rerun.

We were thick as two thieves in a pod.