Fool me once …

… shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me!

Will Charlie ever learn??, pic:

This is very useful expression that I just recently taught my son.  It means that the first time somebody tricks you or takes advantage of you it is that person’s fault.  But you should learn from that experience and not let the same thing happen to you again.  If you allow people to take advantage of you or fool you a second (or third …) time it is your fault, not theirs.  You should have learned from that mistake.

often just the first part of the expression is used, leaving the rest unspoken – everybody understands anyway.

A famous example of “shame on me” is Charlie Brown in the comic strip “The Peanuts”.  Lucy promises him to hold the football still for him to kick it and every time he takes the leap of faith and tries to kick it she pulls it away at the last minute and Charlie falls on his butt in a spectacular way.  I always hope he eventually says” “Fool me once …..”, alas, he never does.


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