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Proverbs

Written in: Grade 6 | Year: 2009

I hope that I don't bore you to death while I do my speech, so please bear with me. Yes, I know, that's easier said than done. Now I know everyone must be wondering what I'm talking about. Now, without further adoÖ..my speech.

Good afternoon fellow staff and students. Today I will be talking about strange proverbs in the English language.

Sshhhhh, don't you know that loose lips sink tall ships? This phrase was invented in the second World War, as a warning to soldiers writing home, or who were captured by enemies, not to disclose the movements or whereabouts of ships and troops, or the ships could literally be sunk because of the men talking. Today, it's more about rumors and people's reputation. And talking of men, you know that boys will be boys. This came from a film in 1935, yet now it is used to explain the behavior of boys.

Hopefully, the boys wonít break a leg when they are just being boys. But this phrase is actually used to wish someone luck before they perform. It is typically said to actors before they go onto stage to perform. It originally was a superstition that wishing a person "good luck" was considered bad luck. It is now used for anytime someone is going to do something important. And donít forget, that even if you did break a leg, every cloud has a silver lining. This phrase is used to comfort somebody who's having problems. It means that it is always possible to get something positive out of a situation, no matter how unpleasant, difficult or even painful it might seem.

Even having to write this speech had a silver lining...I got to have my cake and eat it too. This was my reward for finishing my speech! The phrase "having your cake and eating it too" literally means you can't finish your cake, and then also eat it after. It was a way of saying that a person wanted more than they could handle or more than they deserved. I like to eat cake, but I don't like to eat my words. Eating one's words, is not writing a bunch of words on a piece of paper, and then trying to eat that! It means to have to admit that what you said was wrong. In those cases, it would have been better to hold your tongue. Now, of course, actually holding one's own tongue would look pretty silly. I know because I looked at myself in the mirror when I tried this. What it means, of course, is to not talk and be patient.

This is similar to holding your horses, but this means for a person to be patient or remain calm. Speaking of animals, I remember when I was practicing this speech, the cat had my tongue, which does not mean a cat actually had hold of my tongue. I donít even own a cat. What that phrase means is when a person who is usually quite talkative, goes silent.

Speaking of your tongue, which is in your mouth, so are your teeth. I handed this speech in by the skin of my teeth, by finishing it with only 5 days to go. Of course, your teeth donít have skin....at least mine donít, but if you leave something to the last minute or just barely get something done, itís not a pleasant experience, and that's what this phrase means. Speaking about mouths, never look a gift horse in the mouth. What that means, is that if you receive a gift, do not look over it for flaws, to see what quality it was or even to check the price. I find people who do this are very rude and inconsiderate.

However, I wouldn't cry "Crocodile" tears if it wasn't expensive. Crocodiles can not cry. The phrase means that if someone is shedding crocodile tears, it means that they arenít really crying, or they're just doing it to get attention. I have some good friends who never cry crocodile tears or look a gift horse in the mouth. Theyíre true friends. As they say, a leopard never changes its spots. That means that someone will forever stay true to you, they won't betray you, and they won't change. However, this can also be bad. For example, if a criminal gets out of jail, and a month later is back in jail, it means that he didnít change his spots.

A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.. What exactly does that mean, you must be wondering. It means, if you have something valuable, don't gamble or risk it to try and get more that is more valuable, or pretty. However, you might not get it and be left empty-handed.

Well, it looks like all of you are still alive! Thatís good that none of you ďkicked the bucketĒ! Well, you know what they say; it ainít over till the fat lady sings. And always remember to stop and smell the roses on lifeís journey.
Thank you for bearing with me!




 
 
 
       

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