15 November 2010

Cartoon : To Be a Shoe In & It Costs an Arm and a Leg

Political cartoon by Joe Heller of the The Green Bay Press-Gazette in Wisconsin and published on 12 November 2010.

This cartoon from the political left is mocking the release of former President George W. Bush’s book Decision Points. It alludes to the famous incident where an Iraqi journalist threw his shoe at the President which is a major insult in the Middle East. The cartoonist plays on the idiomatic expression ‘ to be a shoo-in.’

If you are a shoo-in, it means that you are sure and certain to win or be successful at something. It’s an easy victory. It is derived from the verb ‘to shoo’ which means to drive a person or an animal in a certain direction. One way of telling someone to go away is to simply say “Shoo!” while waving your hand in the direction you want them to leave.

It is a common mistake by a lot of English speakers to misspell the idiomatic expression as in the cartoon, though here the cartoonist purposely is playing with the expression.

Political cartoon by Jerry Holbert of The Boston Herald in Massachusetts and published on 12 November 2010.

This cartoon is also by a cartoonist from the political left which criticizes the recommended proposals a congressional committee made to help reduce the US deficit. For the taxpayer, it’s going to cost him an arm and eventually a leg. To cost an arm and a leg is the English equivalent of the French expression ‘coûter les yeux de la tête’ or ‘coûter la peau des fesses.’

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