Tuesday, October 30, 2007

A discussion Regarding the Dumbest Phrase Ever

"I'm drawing a line in the sand"

Really....? You are? That's SO intimidating!!! Way to put your foot down!

This post was originally going to be a rant on how people continuously misuse that phrase. But before I did it, I, being a top-notch researcher, googled the phrase to make sure that I was right and the rest of the world is wrong.

See, I thought drawing a line in the sand meant you're taking a meaningless stand against something that is out of your control.

Turns out I was wrong. Drawing a line in the sand really does mean "establishing a limit beyond which things will be unacceptable."

I understand the concept of drawing a line to separate the acceptable from the unacceptable. Lines make sense. But a line...IN THE SAND?

Ok. bear with me. Let's pretend you're on the beach. It's sunny. It's pretty. It's a fucking joyous damn day. You decide to draw a line in the sand. You draw your line. Five minutes later, you steal one of your brother's ritalin pills, go run off with your friends and practice french kissing behind the cabana.

An hour later, you go back to check on your line, and guess what? You can't find it. Why? BECAUSE YOU DREW IT IN THE SAND, FUCKNUT.

Even if you don't steal one of your brother's ritalin pills and run off to practice french kissing. Even if you stand by and guard your precious line that you drew in the sand. Either the wind, the surf, a bird or a person is going to fuck up your line in a matter of minutes. Why? BECAUSE YOU DREW IT IN THE SAND!

If you want to draw a line to separate the acceptable from the unacceptable, USE SOMETHING OTHER THAN SAND. Use red wine on beige carpeting to draw your line for example. That should do the trick. Or use permanent marker on khakis. Whatever.

But if you try to tell me you are drawing a line in the sand as a way of making a point to me, you can guarantee that I will respect that line about as long as that line would actually exist in nature. And then I'll call you names both to your face and behind your back.

It's a stupid phrase. It makes no sense. Don't use it. If you think I'm wrong, you're wrong.

The end.


MollyB, Bloggerin said...

Where does the saying come from? I always thought it was a Norman Schwarzkopf thing.

Chicago1L said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chicago1L said...


I think they use sand because you can literally draw in it. On the other hand, other surfaces (road, sidewalk, carpet, marble..etc) are a little more difficult to draw on with your finger.


Grace said...

chicago 1-L

No. Just no.

butterflyfish said...

Ok... see now you made me giggle and smirk in class.

"Becuse you drew it in the sand fucknut."

Funniest post I've read in about 2 weeks.

Army Girl said...

The Stormin' Norman reference is a good one but I don't think that is the origin. This might be:

"One of the Macedonian kings, a bit short of cash, decided to invade Egypt, then a Roman protectorate. His army was met at the border by a lone Roman senator named Popillius Laenas, who ordered the king to withdraw. The king began to stall for time, so Popillius Laenas drew a circle in the sand around the king and demanded that the king agree to withdraw his army before he stepped out of the circle. The king, apparently impressed by the senator's nerve (or, more likely, by the Roman Empire in general), withdrew. Incidentally, not only is this account verified by contemporary historians, but it also may be the only known instance of a line drawn in the sand actually stopping someone."

Regardless of the origin, you are right about the line disappearing and that it's stupid.

Rachel M. said...

i'm naming my first album "drawing a line in the sand."

Texas said...

I've always thought it was from the Alamo...

Allegedly, William Travis (or Jim Bowie or Davy Crocket or someone else that was important) drew a line in the sand outside the mission and told everyone who was with him to cross the line. At least that is the story I've heard a gazillion trillion times while growing up. We're proud of our stories down here. :)

Jane Know said...

i'm going to start saying "im spilling a line of red wine on the beige carpet" from now on. it is so much more permanent. it evokes much more meaning than the whole sand reference.

Harmless Error said...

Just. Awesome.

eddie said...

Hahahaha. Oh, that was funny on so many levels. None of those levels are built in the sand of course. I would also like to offer another contender for the award: "Cheap at half the price", meaning that something is inexpensive. Shouldn't this be "cheap at double the price"? And that's ignoring the fact that a price can't be cheap, it can only be low or high, but I digress.

Thanks for the daily guffaw, and for adding 'fucknut' to my vocabulary. We Brits have our insults, but it's great to be picking up fucknuts and asshats along the way to add to the collection.