When people say this, they usually assume it means that the world is at their feet and they are in a position where everything is going to work in their favour. Others say it to imply that they are “the pearl” and they are being cultivated for greatness.
However, when these lines were spoken in Shakespeare’s ’The Merry Wives of Windsor’, the intention is actually quite different.
In a conversation between two less-than-reputable characters, this conversation takes place:
In other words, if Falstaff won’t give him money, Pistol will go and take it forcibly from other people. It’s about taking what one is not entitled to, and it has quite violent connotations.
An oyster does not willingly open – it has to be forced. An oyster does not willingly give up its pearl, which can take years to develop, and the oyster is often damaged or killed in the process of extracting the pearl.
This is an image of violence, and not one of happy or fortunate circumstances at all.
Today, I developed a new phrase which I think is going to prove very useful for me, if not for anyone else.
The term is laxative proximity.
It describes the phenomenon where the effect of a particular individual’s presence gives one the feeling or mood commonly known as “the sh*ts”.
The higher the laxative proximity (LP), the greater that effect.
Some people can manage to have a powerful LP effect from a considerable distance. All it takes is for someone to mention their name, or they send you a text or email, or they comment on a friend’s Facebook post… and those telltale first sensations of the LP effect kick in. Others have a more cumulative effect: the more time you spend with them, the worse it gets. At the same time, some individuals are so toxic, it’s impossible to be completely immune. Hence, it should be noted that LP has quite a strong residual effect. It can take considerable time for the effect to wear off.
I believe that my observation and definition of LP may just prove to be a significant moment in history. I Googled the phrase, and it seems that nobody has used the term in this sense on the internet before. There were two or three occurrences that seemed like very poor internet based translation in response to some of the 1,350,000 results (in 0.73 seconds, no less) that suggested various forms and uses of laxatives for physical relief and/or colonic cleansing.
It really does seem as though I have achieved something I’ve often thought I’d like to do: creating a newly-coined phrase of my own.
Gosh, I’m feeling very accomplished for this early on a Friday night.