Archive for March 6th, 2011

March 6, 2011

Triple chocolate

This really belongs with the “bigger is better” series – the same desires that drive people to drink 900 some odd milliliters of coffee drives them to triple up not realizing that there can be too much of a good thing.  There is a tendency here in the US to believe that if, for example, chocolate is good, the double chocolate is better and triple chocolate is even better than that.

It generally seems to stop at triple, quadruple apparently is a little excessive – even for the bigger is better crowd.

Triple chocolate, mouse etc cake, pic:

That leave us very often with lots of something generally good – like chocolate – but at a bad quality.  Good triple chocolate – or anything – comes at a price but since people want lots and cheap, that is what they get: huge portions of triple something that nobody really wants to eat because it does not taste all that great but since it is on a plate right in front of you already, you eat it.  All of it or at least most of it.

Overblown portions of mediocre quality are the rule.  Every time I go to Europe, or Australia for that matter (as I just discovered) I need to adjust my internal portion-size calibrator and tell my self that the little thingy on my plate, made from delicious dark Swiss or belgian chocolate is so much more satisfying than the “Great Wall of China triple chocolate delight” at the Chinese restauarant around the corner.

It’s always hard at first, just like getting used to not eating the huge portions of whatever – jus because they are there.


March 6, 2011

Can’t hold a candle too

Another not terrible common expression that you might not use a lot but better understand when somebody else uses it:  Can’t hold a candle to something.

Modern interpretation: hoilding the flashlight to ..., pic:

The expression means not being as good as another person or thing, to be far less competent or have far less skills than someone else.  The expression is used both for people and things as these examples show:

“In terms of performance a Chevy just can’t hold a candle to a Porsche.”

“Jennifer is a good singer, but she can’t really hold a candle to Mary.”

The origin of the expression dates back to the days before electricity where it was often necessary to have a helper who held a candle to perform a task during night time.  Generally holding the candle was the easier of the two tasks and so whoever ended up holding the candle was less qualified than the person performing the actual task – whatever that might be.