In a backlash against received wisdom, good workmen have revealed that it’s not just bad workmen who blame their tools, but good ones too.
“My hammer’s crap,” said Geoff, a builder from Northampton. “It’s not completely flat, so every time I hit a nail it goes in at an angle. I’m a good workman, but my hammer-work is rubbish because my hammer is crap. I’d buy a new hammer, but I’ve got no money because I can’t get any jobs because of my rubbish hammer-work. It’s a vicious circle.”
Jules, a bricklayer from Liverpool, has a similar story: “I’m a really good bricklayer, but my cement mixer’s knackered. I’m really good at laying cement, I just can’t get any decent cement. I always get the blame when a wall falls on someone’s dog or child or whatever, but it’s not me, it’s the mixer. Do you know how much they cost?”
It’s not just phrases about workmen that are being reassessed. A man buying eggs in an Essex supermarket recently became an internet sensation when filmed at the checkout complaining about the phrase ‘don’t put all your eggs in one basket’.
“What else am I supposed to do?” he yelled at anyone who would listen. “Put each egg in its own basket and carry several baskets around with me? I don’t even own one basket. Who owns a basket in the twenty-first century? The phrase makes no sense.”
Celebrities have gotten behind a new campaign to reduce the use of outdated phrases. Bono has appeared in a TV appeal urging people to stop saying that things are ‘the best thing since sliced bread’.
“Pre-sliced bread isn’t that big a deal,” he says in the video. “People already had knives. In fact, knives were better because you could cut each individual slice to any size you want. The phrase should be, ‘the worst thing since sliced bread’. We’ve actually grown lazier and less skilled with knives as a result of pre-sliced bread.”
Mary Berry is also on board the campaign, advocating the end of the phrase, ‘you can’t have your cake and eat it’.
“Just bake two fucking cakes,” she recently screamed at a reporter.