He led me on a blind goose chase

This is a mash up of “down a blind alley” and “led on a wild goose chase”, both meaning an unproductive or futile pursuit.  Blind and wild are similar sounding words, so the brain chose the wrong swirling fragment.  This seems to be a common malaphor, based on the many internet hits.   Reminds me of the proverb:  A blind goose is as good as a deaf duck  (ok, I made that up – just trying to be a wise quacker).

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2 Comments on “He led me on a blind goose chase”

  1. Peter says:

    It’s also interesting in that it conflates two meanings of “blind”: having no exits (a blind alley), and sightless/aimless (a blind chase). A blind goose chase in the first sense would actually be quite easy since the goose would have no way out.

    In English that first meaning seems to only survive in the phrase “blind alley” or similar (“blind passage”), but in German, for example, your appendix is a “blinddarm” (blind intestine) since it’s only connected at one end to the large intestine.


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