pexels pixabay 51159Time to spill the beans. There's no point beating around the bush about it. Fasten your seat belts because Up & Coming Weekly is about to give you the best bang for your buck. Defined as "an expression in the usage of a language that is peculiar to itself either in having a meaning that cannot be derived from the conjoined meanings of its elements," by the Merriam-Webster dictionary, idioms, or turns of phrases as some might know them, exist around the world in varying ways to express the everyday shared experiences between people.

One such expression is "It's all Greek to me." As it would appear, most languages and cultures across the globe have a phrase or way of saying they don't understand something or that a particular concept is entirely foreign. If you were Russian, you might instead say, "Eto dlya menya kitayskaya gramota," which roughly translates to "This is Chinese writing to me." Meanwhile, those in China might instead say something akin to, "This is ghost writing to me," indicating that the person has no hope of understanding whatever is being discussed. Coming around to Europe, a German might say, "Das kommt mir spanisch vor," meaning, "That sounds Spanish to me."

It goes to show that even in something trivial, like expressing our lack of understanding, we inadvertently come closer to one another through that shared and common experience. But what other idioms exist in different languages that we might also understand? Here are some interesting and fun variations of common sayings that you can use to express those vague feelings that arise in everyday interactions.

"A chattering bird builds no nest."
A popular idiom and proverb used by Cameroonians and Ugandans, the phrase expresses the futility of words before actions. We might use the common saying, "Talk is cheap." Both go to express the fact that talking about something is less important than actually doing the work.

"I think my pig whistles."
This phrase in German is a way to express one's surprise or indignation at something thought extremely unlikely or seen as impossible. Our variation on this phrase would be, "When pigs fly," which similarly expresses one's belief that something is near impossible.

"Gold coins to a cat"
A Japanese phrase meaning to give something useful to an unappreciative audience. However, we might know it instead as, "To cast pearls before swine," which indicates that a certain action or expression to a specific group of peoples is futile or meaningless because the audience either does not, or cannot, appreciate what is being shown to them.

"To not have hairs on one's tongue."
In Spanish, this is one way to say that someone speaks bluntly or is direct with their approach and words. Our culture might instead say someone "is a straight shooter" or "they don't know how to bite their tongue."

Whether it be a turn of phrase, a common saying, or just a unique expression of a common occurrence, idioms exist across all cultures, languages, and societies to add a sense of comedy, brevity, and sometimes simplicity to express the understanding of complex or common experiences. Though we might express things in different ways, U&CW agrees that we all seem to be cut from the same cloth.

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