This timely malaphor was recently uttered by Donald Trump. An article in the July 20, 2015 New York Times quotes The Donald:
“I have a pulse to the ground,” he added. “I think I know what’s wrong with the country, and I think I’ve been able to portray that in a way that people agree with.”
This is a conflation of “have my finger on the pulse” (to be familiar with the most recent developments) and “have my ear to the ground” (to watch and listen carefully to what is happening around you). Lots going on with this one. Fingers go into ears, etc. This one is similar to the March 23, 2015 entry, “keep your finger on the ball”. https://malaphors.com/?s=pulse A big thank you to Paula Garrety for seeing this one and passing it on!
This is a mix of “keep an ear to the ground” (alert and listening for clues) and “keep your eyes wide open (or peeled)” (vigilant and watchful). This subtle conflation was heard on Bloomberg news:
Question from interviewer: how do you have such success picking funds?
Ans: we keep our eyes to the ground.
The speaker quickly corrected himself and said: “We keep our ears to the ground and look ahead.” Self caught malaphor. Nice. A big thank you to John Costello for hearing this one.