So this past weekend was mother’s day, bless them and I made my monthly trip to the only store where I get too much of something I kinda need, Costco. On this trip, one particular item was strategically placed everywhere in the store, flowers. By the entrance, by the exit, by the bread, by the dog food, by the dairy, in your cart, wait how’d that get there? Flowers of all races, colors and arrangements. Yellows with white, red with purple, big with small, wild bushy flowers with sleek flowers, they coexisted to bring joy to the eyes of someone’s creator. As mentioned before, my mother hates flowers so there was no need to get her any flowers and instead, I got her a 3,000 pack of sponges, (it was the smallest quantity they had, cause you know, Costco.) I make my way to the checkout line and the theme continues, my eyes see nothing but a sea of flowers. Every cart has flowers and my thoughts are, what a successful capitalization by the flower companies on a man made holiday. They’re all man made but you get what I mean. I’m next in line and the clerk says to the man in front of me, “Wow, you picked out some good ones, these are beautiful flowers. These things have been selling, literally, like hot cakes.”
I would like to note that I abhor the use of the word literally. The only time I take enjoyment of it in a sentence is when it is used improperly. I was so hungry, I literally died. I was so excited I literally jumped out of my skin. I was so scared I literally shit myself. These are literally the best ways to use this word. Only people who right good and speak good would know that though.
The buyer was not amused by the sweet talk and grabbed his bag quickly and moved along his way. I started thinking, what the heck does it mean to sell like hot cakes? Well I know what it means, but why do people say this? I was so confused I was literally scratching a hole into my scalp from wonder. Sadly, is more boring than exciting. Exciting in that nobody knows it’s actual origin and boring due to the fact that the assumed origin is lame, literally. For those of you that don’t know, hot cakes are just another word for pancakes. So the explanation is that hot cakes were popular at large events like church gatherings, festivals, fairs etc. so when the crowds gather, they are purchased as fast as they can be made by the people. Since hot cakes are usually sold in quantities of more than one, it sells much quicker than it can be made. Lame, I know. So I decided to look into some more food cliches and thought I’d share them.
Take it with a grain of salt: An Ancient Roman Pompei one family member had in his cabinet the following note: “Take two dried walnuts, two figs, and twenty leaves of rue; pound them all together, with the addition of a grain of salt; if a person takes this mixture fasting, he will be proof against all poisons for that day.” Since he would be able to disregard poisons due to this antidote we now use it as short form for us not take something too seriously… since the antidote with salt will literally cure you anyways.
Piece of Cake: In the 1870s, cakes were given out as prizes in competitions and slaves would walk down the aisle in pairs and the most graceful pair would “take the cake.” Ironically it was a demanding process that eventually turned to mean something that is easy.
Born with a Silver spoon in his mouth: In the 1700s, Silver spoons were a symbol of status and one would carry it around like a passport to denote class. Of course if you were born with one in your mouth, you did not earn it but had it given to you.
Apple of my eye: People once believed that the pupil in our eye was a solid object and referred to it as an Apple. So saying you are the apple of my eye is saying you are as precious as the ability to see.
Alright to keep consistent with the food theme, I will literally end today’s thoughts with a food conversation I had with Tracey. Wait, no, that is not an acceptable usage of the word literally. I literally thought using literally improperly would literally be a piece of cake and I literally pissed myself after posting such a repugnant use of literally. literally.