Monday, March 30, 2009

Canterbury tales

A nice use of the proper phrase, as reported on
County Hall Tory leader Cllr Paul Carter described the Labour publication as "all mouth and trousers".

It's particularly pleasing to see it being used right in Kent, as the bastardised phrase seems to dominate in the south-east.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Doubly confused

Roisin Burke makes a ballock of it in the Irish Independent when considering how to repair the country's image:
Branding, corporate image, PR, marketing proposition -- these are dreadful, superficial terms to many people. Understandably so, suggesting,, as they sometimes do, the trumpeting of style over substance, the 'all mouth and no trousers', 'fur coat and no underwear', brash 'great little country' take on the national image that helped get us into this mess in the first place.

Again, the trousers are part of the style, not the substance. And the use of 'fur coat and no underwear' is no better - first, the usual phrase is 'fur coat, no knickers', though that might be a bit rude for delicate Irish tastes; and second, that means something else entirely...

Thursday, March 05, 2009


'80s politico turned sports hack David Mellor dribbles out the bastardised version in an Evening Standard column:
Everywhere in the world there's a derisive phrase to describe a guy like UEFA president Michel Platini. Here, it's all mouth and no trousers; in Texas, all hat and no cattle; in Australia, the kind of guy who talks a good lay.

I suppose that, if by 'here' he means the dumber parts of London, he's right, but it's still depressing to see the meaningless bastardisation being used instead of the correct form. And any conjunction of Mellor and 'no trousers' just summons up horrible memories of that Chelsea-strip story.