I've often heard the expression "it's a cake walk" to describe especially easy tasks. Having never experienced an actual cake walk until last week at my daughter's school (see prior post titled: "That Bitch Elsa from 'Frozen' Can Kiss My Ass"), I had no idea how inapt this expression really was. Its accuracy is on the order of "sleeping like a baby," an idiom used to describe sound sleep that was obviously coined by a person who never had to shove their titties into a baby's mouth at three in the morning. I mean, I understand the origins of the "cake walk" idiom: everyone walks around in a circle until the music stops. Everyone gets a cupcake and there are no losers, only winners. Except there are losers. The losers are the extremely cranky adults who try to maintain order among 100 elementary school kids clamoring and clawing for cupcakes as if it's the first time any of them have been fed in over a month. As usual, a seemingly minor silent observation led to a major mental detour, and I was reminded of the many other expressions that fail to withstand close scrutiny. Not idioms so much, but more just "words of warning" that someone is poised to do the exact opposite of what they claim to be doing. For example:
1. Anytime someone says, "here's a piece of friendly advice . . . " you know you're about to receive some decidedly unfriendly advice.
2. If a person claims, "you know I never complain, but . . . " you can be sure this is a person who complains all the fucking time to literally anyone who will listen.
3. If news is being delivered "with all due respect," rest assured that absolutely zero respect is due to be forthcoming.
4. When a know-it-all's lengthy monologue ends with the rhetorical question, "but what do I know?" the real answer is, "apparently everything!"
5. When you're offered someone's "humble" opinion, you can count on the fact that their opinion is anything but.
6. And the ultimate: when someone says, "no offense, but . . ." you are guaranteed to be deeply offended, even before the rest of the sentence is uttered.
And that's my humble opinion about idioms and expressions. But then again . . . what do I know?