Phrases you've never understood.


New member
Mar 17, 2009
DeathChairOfHell said:
"Hot Potato". Why specifically a potato? I mean, they're not that hard to hold even when they are hot, unless you open them up.
A freshly baked potato stays hot for a long time.

Scrustle said:
One that really REALLY gets on my nerves is "stop feeling sorry for yourself". What the hell is that supposed to mean? It doesn't make any sense when you think about it. Feeling sorry means when you feel guilty and remorseful for doing something wrong to someone, how can you feel that about yourself? I've never experienced anything even vaguely like that feeling. It makes no sense at all. It makes me so angry when people say that to me.
Feeling sorry for someone implies pity; feeling sorry about something implies regret. "Stop feeling sorry for yourself" is derived from the former.


New member
Mar 14, 2011
IpunchFaces said:
"More than one way to skin a cat"

I mean, really? Skinning cats?
I think this one is more for the big cats, not house cats. I'm pretty sure trappers use to/still sell the fur. It's more encompassing than "there's more than one way to skin a bob cat."


Inspired by Nonsense
Aug 25, 2009
"[You] ************!". So, its bad that I have sex with mothers, which may include your own?
Also, "You gotta break out a few eggs to make an omelette.". No shit Sherlock.


New member
Oct 22, 2008
retyopy said:
floppylobster said:
"Wow, just wow."

You've already said 'wow' by itself, now you've added 'just' and repeated it. If you really wanted to say just wow, then you would have just said 'wow' and been done with it.
I beleive this is basically said to say "this is great, JUST great," as in there is nothing BUT wow here.
I do get it, I guess it just kind of annoys me a little. Like when people use three exclamation points/marks!!! You've made your point. Making it again doesn't make it any stronger. Also it's a highly unoriginal way of saying it. I tend to not get why people use stock phrases when simple words will do.

But I guess it's all just six of one and half a dozen of the other, right??!??!!?!!! ;)

Just thinking about WTF though... I mean 'What the fuck'. We all get it and understand it, but when you really analyse that sentence it really doesn't make much sense. It's like, what the fuck is up with 'what the fuck'?


New member
Nov 25, 2010
Purple Shrimp said:
Some_weirdGuy said:
Purple Shrimp said:
how do you not understand "could care less"
I think we all understand it, its just that it make the speaker sound like an idiot when they say it wrong like that.

I '"could" care less means you do care about it, i "couldn't" care less means that you are unable to care any less about whatever it is even if you tried.

So to explain it in another way: Why the hell are you saying you do care when what you mean is that you don't give a damn?
Its not even being sarcastic when you say 'could', so it really just makes you look stupid...
May I inquire why you have no problem with so many other phrases being non-literal (ie "It's raining cats and dogs"), but you draw the line here?
Its not a non-literal phrase, its a phrase being said wrong[/].

Its exactly the same as Biff Tannen's "make like a tree and get out of here" or "that's about as funny as a screen door on a battleship". Its not how the saying goes and you look stupid for saying wrong.


New member
Nov 26, 2010
retyopy said:
kinapuffar said:
Have your cake and eat it is so simple.

You can either have a cake, or you can eat the cake.
If you eat it, you have no cake left.
If you save your cake and just have it in your hand, you can't eat it.

Having your cake and eating it too means you get to eat cake, but you still have a cake left afterwards.

What is so confusing about that?
What? What is the purpose of having a cake if you aren't going to eat it? Ok, so I won't have the cake later, but that's life.
If you save your cake you can eat it later when you want cake.
If you have your cake and eat it too, you can eat one cake now, and still have one left for if the occasion should arise and you want more cake.

It's basically the same as if you wanted to buy an expensive car, but you still want to keep all of your money.
You can't have both.
Super rich people get to have their cake and eat it too. They become wealthy enough to afford luxury cars, and then the manufacturers give them away for free just to people will see the famous person driving their car.
Fuck reality!

WafflesandBacon said:
"[You] ************!". So, its bad that I have sex with mothers, which may include your own?
Also, "You gotta break out a few eggs to make an omelette.". No shit Sherlock.
************ refers specifically to fucking your own mother. Which is pretty bad, yeah.

And it's "Break a few eggs to make an omelette." and it means that you can't always be nice and maintain order.
Somtimes you need to cause some destruction, or do things that are considered wrong in order to make the end result work.
Sometimes the firefighters need to chop down a few doors to save people.
Sometimes the police need to shoot a few criminals to save innocent civilians.
Sometimes the CEO of a large corporation has to fire a whole bunch of people who haven't done anything to deserve losing their jobs, to keep the business afloat.


New member
Apr 13, 2010
Rawne1980 said:
I remember as a child my sister burst into tears and my dad said "if you don't be quiet i'll give you something to cry about".

Er, dad ... she's already crying numbnuts your comment made no sense.

Another parent one and i'm guilty of using this myself.

"Dad, can we go to the beach"


"Aww dad why not?"

"Just because"

Just because. Because bloody what?
These two.

Also, "Because Y isnt a Z and a Z isnt a Y and it never will be." ... if anyone else got that one? v.v;


Man must have a code.
Dec 21, 2007
A lot of people misunderstand "the exception that proves the rule". Practically it's the exception that proves the rule, exists. It comes from old latin exceptio probat regulam in casibus non or "the exception confirms the rule in cases not excepted"

Special leave is given for men to be out of barracks tonight till 11.00 p.m.; "The exception proves the rule" means that this special leave implies a rule requiring men, except when an exception is made, to be in earlier. The value of this in interpreting statutes is plain.
-Fowler's Modern English
There is a practical aspect as for science and mathematics but that's not it's origin.


New member
Jan 20, 2011
The internet phrase "This is me giving a fuck", usually with a picture of a person not interested in something.

So, when you look like you're not interested in something, you're actually interested?

What bizaro planet are you from, internets?


Elite Member
Sep 8, 2009
CmRet said:
I never understood the saying "Tea calling the kettle black" or something like that. Just...what?
The phrase is "The pot calling the kettle black", and it comes from a time when wrought iron was used to make (among other things) tea kettles and cook pots. The phrase is a way of saying that someone is being hypocritical.
Glenn Beck saying that Charlie Sheen is crazy would be an example of the 'Pot calling the Kettle black'.
Another example would be a Klansmen saying that a Black Panther was a dangerous, racist extremist.


New member
May 6, 2009
Dracowrath said:
Tit for tat. I know what a tit is, but wtf is a tat?
It's a reference to trading - literally 'this' for 'that'.

I never quite got the phrase Thick as Two Short Planks.

It means to be stupid, but why two short planks? The planks is the length so important?