This blog is for everyone who uses words.

The ordinary-sized words are for everyone, but the big ones are especially for children.

Monday, 14 November 2011

Spot the frippet: a flying pie.

I wouldn't say my husband was a pessimist, but yesterday when we were out for a walk he saw two magpies, sighed heavily, and said: two for sorrow.

And when I pointed out it was actually:

One for sorrow,
Two for joy,
Three for a girl
And four for a boy
Five for silver,
Six for gold,
And seven for a secret
Never to be told;
Eight a wish
And nine a kiss
And ten's a bird you're
Best to miss.

he just looked puzzled and said:'s not one for sorrow, two for even more sorrow, then?

Anyway, flying pies. If there are no magpies where you live (though there are magpies almost everywhere except South America and the arctic regions) then surely pies are everywhere, and can easily be made to fly.

Juggling a hot pie is, after all, an ineradicable human instinct.

You know, I'm hungry already.

Spot the frippet: a flying pie. No one's quite sure where the word pie meaning something-to-eat-wrapped-in-pastry comes from, but some people say it's from the word magpie, which has a habit of hoarding things in its nest, just as all sorts of odd things can end up in the pies you eat.

The word pie meaning magpie is to do with being black and white. It comes from the Latin pīca, which means magpie, and is related to pīcus, which means woodpecker.

The mag bit of magpie is from the girl's name, and implies chatterbox.

If you do see a magpie then it's supposed to be lucky to take off your hat and say good morning Mr Magpie, how are your wife and children?


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