Hairy Things That are Not What They Seem
From splitting hairs to bad hair days, things are not always what they seem. Some hairy expressions don’t always mean what they say.
English is full of strange idiomatic sayings and phrases. Here are some very hairy expressions that don’t always mean what they say.
Keep Your Hair On
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This means don’t lose your temper, stay calm. It is similar in meaning to those other gems:
‘don’t flip your lid’ and ‘don’t lose your head’.
A Bad Hair Day
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A day when one’s hair just doesn’t look right, or one where everything seems to go wrong.
Out of Your Hair
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To get someone, or something out of your hair is to deal with it, get rid of it, push it away. For example I could give my children some money to go bowling and stay out of my hair.
Something that is airy (or hairy) fairy is of no substance. For instance, we have a problem and all he can come up with are airy fairy ideas that are totally impractical.
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A hairy ride is a scary one. (slang)
To dissect a subject into little tiny pieces. To pull it apart and be concerned with very minor detail (often not dealing with the whole thing .) Concentrating on trivial and unimportant details.
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This was originally ‘hare-brained’ and referred to the madness of the march hare. It is now commonly used in the ‘hairbrained’ form, often with a hyphen (hair-brained). It means crazy, not properly thought out. For example: He came up with another of his hairbrained schemes and there was no way we could agree.
Hair of the Dog
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This expression is used to refer to the practise of taking another alcoholic drink the next day to alleviate hang over symptoms from the night before. For example: He drank two bottles of wine last night and has a headache this morning, so he ordered hair of the dog with his lunch (ie more wine).
There are many more hairy expressions to add to this list including:
Hair’s breadth (or hare’s breath), hair trigger, hide nor hair, let your hair down.