Sayings in your country


West African sayings; “When brothers fight to death, a stranger inherits their father’s estate”. This simply speaks to the power of unity and peace esp towards achieving a common goal.
"A sculptor is summoned, but it’s the woodpecker that shows up ". This roughly translates to never think too highly of yourself and never be involved in conversations you’re not called into.


@Promann those are both so beautiful!

I have two more from America… not beautiful like those from West Africa

“By the skin of her/his teeth” - it means that she or he he just barely made it, whatever it is. “She made it to the meeting my skin of her teeth.”

“Bless her/his heart” - This is a saying that comes only from Southern states in the US. This phrase is said out loud with beautiful southern accent, making it feel so wonderful. And yet, it actually means that someone is: Off the mark, possibly not that smart, really “out there”… He believes in aliens, bless his heart.


Hold your horses… don’t be so impatient


Similar to don’t lose nine chasing ten. ( Nine in your hand ten in the bush ) Do not lose the opportunities you have at hand chasing after what’s in your imagination


Yes, it is true. We have a saying that is closer to yours. Better titmouse in hand than crane in the sky


Russians often say ‘s gulkin nose’, having in mind “less than nothing”. This is equivalent to the saying itsy-bitsy


My mother used to say “Does that ring a bell?” as in “Do you remember?”


@JessyLynn90 My mother used to say…knock it off or I’ll ring your bell…meaning knock you
one upside your head


I remember the old one my mom and her friends used to say that I know wouldn’t bode well today but still a saying that kinda falls in the same category that some of these have been going.

They used to say [something/someone] is dumber than a box of rocks. – or – [something/someone] is dumber than the glue that held the box [referencing the box from the previous one].

Granted, one was worse than the other. And at least my mom and her friends weren’t so spiteful or hateful because most of the time they refered to a ‘something’ rather than ‘someone’.

Then another few I can think of from my high school days are:

  • Five finger discount
    Basically it’s a way of saying you’re stealing something but in a way that almost removes the implied wrongness of it. Most of the time it was said as a joke without actual intention of doing it or having done it. But sometimes people did five finger discount small things.

  • Borrow without asking
    Kinda the same as above bit this was definitely said as a joke and usually in reference to something that was luxury or out of reach that you admired or totally wanted – so it was a compliment too because it was usually always said either to the owner or while the owner was within ear-shot.

  • “Negative, Ghost Rider” or, “Negative, Ghost Rider, the pattern is full”
    Okay, don’t judge. But, when I was a teen growing up the movie Top Gun was a big thing. It had only been a little over a decade since it had come out for us teens, but it was a movie (among others like the brat pack movies, dirty dancing, and other such classics) we literally watched over and over when we were kids. So by the time we were in our early to late teens … we all had the entire script memorized and the references were massive like most of the movies we had seen hundreds of times. Anyhow, this saying was used in the movie to tell the main character that he couldn’t do a flyby or buzzing of an air control tower and that there were too many other aircraft within the airspace. He did it anyway. That’s part of the reason why it’s iconic. He did it anyway and not just once in the movie, but twice. So the saying was quickly translated to being said by someone that knew something really really should not be done but they questioned your ability to not do it or they simply were trying to tell you no as an answer to something that was supposed to get your attention but they question if you’ll take it seriously or listen. Finally it was a way of saying no and being a smartalec.


Haha! To this day I still say “negative ghost rider” to my partner, as a way of saying “no I don’t know where you left your keys”.




This is a fun topic, I see it now.
Well… from Italy, one saying is: “Sono al verde” = I am in (at) green. The meaning is: I have no money.
There is a wiki page that explains the origin of that saying. It’s in Italian, but Google Translator could help you.



“Do not push grandma into the nettles”!

(In french: faut pas pousser mémé dans les orties!)

Meaning: popular French expression to say that one should not exaggerate or exceed one’s limits.



Is that the same grandma that keeps getting run over by a reindeer?
Poor memere.




In Brazil we use when someone is very thoughtful or distracted the popular saying “Ele está no MUNDO DA LUA”.

Example: “That boy is so clumsy he lives in the moon world (with his head on high?)”.


Russians say ‘Tarakany v golove’ (Cockroaches in the head). This means that a person has his own oddities, pronounced distinctive features.


Avram, in the US, we have lots of similar phrases to this. (Some are quite vulgar!) I will try to convey, but you know…
“He lives in East (insert 2 word vulgarity here) Kansas” - Everyone around the country uses Kansas as the state that means living in the middle of nowhere. Nice people don’t use the vulgarity in the middle and sometimes people just say “She lives in East Jesus”

“She lives in the boondocks” - also means the same thing but it’s not vulgar and often shortened to “boonies”… a similar one is “He lives in the sticks” or “She lives in Timbktu”

Also: “Off the beaten path”, “Godforsaken place,” God knows where," “Out yonder,” “Ends of the Earth,” “One horse town”

I know there is one that is something like “turn left at the cow pasture”… but I can’t remember exactly…


Expressions also change a lot over time and people have different attitudes toward them. For example, an old phrase in the US is “there’s more than one way to skin a cat” (it just means there’s more than one way to do something)

That phrase has become very unpopular because people adore their animals and animal rights activists hope that phrase will stop being used.