Date: Sat, 7 Jan 1995 16:13:04 -0300


Subject: Put-downs

I have been noticing "put-downs" which consist of a sentence implying

that a person is,euphemistically, "a little off"; i.e., addled, crazy,

loony, demented. . . . or just slightly slow. They seem to be similar

in form. So far, these are what I have collected.

He's/She's got one wheel in the sand.

He's/She's two sandwiches short of a picnic (from a British colleague)

His/her elevator doesn't go all the way to the top floor.

His/her roof is missin a few shingles.

(He's/she's) not quite the full shilling, that one. (from an Irish colleague)

It seems that these oblique references to a person's sanity or competence

often use a "height" metaphor (#3 and #4); this makes sense since our

brains, the organ in question, are located at the top or highest point

of our bodies.

Any more of these from ADS-ers? And what would you call them?

Chris Brooks / Kuwait University