Now there will be a few (just kidding, they’ll be more likely millions!) of people around the world today who might be feeling a little out of sorts, off colour, not quite their best, under par, peaky, queasy, et, etc… after their Christmas festivities…
All the above are words we can use to describe how we feel after drinking lots of alcohol. Yesterday, many people will have enjoyed a tipple or three, so they’ll know exactly what I’m talking about in this post.
Today we are looking at 11 of my favourite idioms to describe the effects of / or a person under the influence of, alcohol.
- HAIR OF THE DOG – The morning after a drinking session people will often say this to refer to the idea of having another alcoholic drink in order to make oneself feel better from the effects of the large quantity drunk the night before. Example sentence: Morning sir, can I get you anything? Yes, I’ll have a hair of the dog please.
- HE/SHE DRINKS LIKE A FISH – This refers to someone who can apparently drink without ending! They just drink and drink and drink and drink and drink… You get the idea. Example: Wow, he drinks like a fish!
- OMG HE’S PLASTERED! – Someone who is VERY drunk. Example: We can’t take him, he’s too plastered.
- DRUNK AS A LORD – This is a historical one and referred to noblemen around 1600 who could afford to get drunk, whereas poorer people couldn’t. It has survived to the present day. Example: I saw him stagger in last night drunk as a lord.
- DRUNK AS A SKUNK – So for any animal biologists out there, this one originates from the idea that skunks will often eat fallen fruit that might already be in the process of fermenting. Hence the term drunk as a skunk. Example: He could barely stand up. He was drunk as a skunk.
- WASTED – To be wasted means to be very drunk indeed. Example: He’s too wasted to go on to the second party, let’s get him a taxi home instead.
- LEGLESS – If someone is legless it means they are so drunk they cannot stand up. Hence, legless. Example: They both drank so many cocktails at dinner that they were legless by midnight.
- THREE SHEETS TO THE WIND – Now this one is about ships from many years ago that had sails that had to be tied down and secured. If three of these sails (or sheets) became loose, the ship would become unstable in windy weather and rock from side to side like a drunk person trying to walk. I know this one because I heard my grandparents say it when I was younger, but I don’t hear it being said anymore today. Maybe you’ve heard it recently? Example: Typical of him to come home three sheets to the wind when we still have so much work to do!
- WELL OILED – Again, another way to describe someone who has drunk rather too much… Example: Wow, you were well oiled last night, weren’t you?
- LIGHTWEIGHT – This is usually said of someone who cannot drink much without getting drunk. So a group of friends might playfully tease another friend who they think can’t drink as much as they are able to. Example: If you invite Peter, we wont have to worry about taking taxis because he is such a lightweight he can drive all night.
- DRINK SOMEONE UNDER THE TABLE – This refers to someone who has a reputation for being able to drink a lot (the opposite of the previous one) So much so, that they can take on anyone in a drinking challenge and probably win! Example: Well I heard she can drink any man under the table!
Have you heard any of these before? Have you had any of them said about you or to you? Or have you ever described someone else using some of these? Which (if any) do you think sound a ‘little nicer’ than the others? Which one(s) would you NOT like said about you after a drink or two? I know which ones I don’t like lol.
If you’re going to any parties this holiday, listen out for some of these idioms. (Unless they’re said about you! lol)
Anyway, for the rest of these holidays and at any other time too, remember to be careful if you go out drinking. Some of these idioms are amusing to read about but perhaps not so funny if they become a reality.