Category Archives: Animals

Dog’s Breakfast

Volume 3. Issue 9.

What was said? “The meeting was a complete dog’s breakfast…”

Did someone really say that? Yes, in response to the question “how did the meeting go?” and apparently it was a disaster

What does it mean? It really just translates to a complete mess, mish-mash, hodgepodge or something that has gone very badly where the outcome wasn’t what was intended to be

Origin: Since the 1930’s, the saying “dog’s breakfast” has been used in the U.K. and Commonwealth countries as slang for “a complete mess.”  First recorded instance is from Eric Partridge, in the 1937 edition of his A Dictionary of Slang and Unconventional English, the expression is listed as “a mess.” Although the origin isn’t exactly known, it alludes to the fact that if what you don’t succeed at what you are cooking, then the results are only fit for a dog. It’s usage can be widespread – from what a messy room looks like, to how a meeting went (like the example above).  It is suggested that this dates from a time before canned dog food when a pup’s breakfast would have consisted of dinner leftovers from the night before; hence, “a mess.” Not to be confused with a  parallel expression “a dog’s dinner” which means quite the opposite and usually comes in the form of “all dressed up like a dog’s dinner” and sarcastically means over-dressed / showy.

Dog Breakfast Pic

Sources:

http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dog’s%20breakfast
http://www.nytimes.com/1993/03/07/magazine/on-language-dog-s-breakfast.html
http://dogknowledge.net/dog-stories-and-facts/dog-funny-stories/a-dogs-breakfast-and-a-dogs-dinner.php
http://idioms.thefreedictionary.com/a+dog’s+breakfast
http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=dog%27s%20breakfast
http://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/114550.html

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Filed under Animals, Business Sayings, Idiom, Idioms

Blue Bird Opportunity

Volume 3. Issue 6.

What was said? “If they are all the right ‘blue birds,’ then no action is required”

Did someone really say that? Yes, in an email referencing a list of potential project / sales opportunities.

What does it mean? An easily made sales opportunity that is unexpected or very profitable.

Origin: Bluebird is defined as ‘happiness’ by the Oxford English Dictionary with its origin dating back to 1909. Most of us know the bluebird (also blue-bird and blue bird) as an actual bird found commonly in North America. The first mention of bluebird was in the “l’Oiseau bleu” 1909 play by Belgian dramatist and poet Maurice Maeterlinck, literally translating to “The Blue Bird” with the figurative speech used in the play “the bluebird of happiness.” Bluebirds tend to elicit happiness as seen in the song “ Somewhere over the rainbow, bluebirds fly” from the Wizard of Oz from 1939. The term has been increasingly used in corporate circles in the past few years and “Bluebirds are those new business opportunities, which seem to fly in through the window. Many professional services firms are tempted to pitch for every bluebird that comes their way, but this may not be a profitable use of their resources in the long-term (How to Manage Bluebirds). In a nutshell it’s sales slang for an opportunity (or actual sale) that presents itself to the salesperson or the selling organization without having made much direct effort in securing it.

[image: slideshow]

Side Note: Most school buses in the US are made by the Blue Bird Corporation, which began in 1927 and is based in Fort Valley, GA.

Sources:
http://salesdictionary.com/index.php?term=b&tab=%3F
http://onlineslangdictionary.com/meaning-definition-of/bluebird
http://www.waywordradio.org/bluebird/
http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?search=hermann+maurice+saxe
http://businesstoday.intoday.in/story/new-words-in-business/1/13969.html
http://www.infobarrel.com/The_Blue_Bird_of_Happiness_Phrase:_Origins_and_Meanings

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Filed under Animals, Business Sayings