Joe Theismann, the ex-Redskins quarterback, was discussing the 2018 Redskins on a local D.C. sports talk radio show and in particular the average wide receiver corps. This is a mash up of “more (something) than you can shake a stick at” (a very large number) and “nothing to write home about” (not especially remarkable or noteworthy). This is an interesting one as the two idioms have almost opposite meanings – a perfect example of an incongruent conflation. Maybe Joe was thinking of an earthquake with homes shaking when he uttered this one. A big thanks to Joe Welch who heard this one and sent it in.
Here’s the background for this one: “I was playing a board game with my friend Edil (unsure what game) a couple of days ago. Something significant happened in the game that took me and him by surprise. We both said, simultaneously, “Well, that’s nothing to sneeze home about”. Neither of us had ever used that phrase before, and we looked at each other in utter amazement.” Not sure what you call a malaphor that two speak at once. Must be like seeing a double rainbow. Remarkable. This is a nice mashup of “nothing to sneeze at” (not something that should be ignored) and “nothing to write home about” (not especially remarkable or noteworthy). I think the common word “nothing” must have set off this nice malaphor by TWO PEOPLE AT THE SAME TIME! A big thank you to Miiko Valkonen for hearing, saying, and sharing this one.