by Elena Kolesnikova
Copyright © 2023
It’s raining cats and dogs.
(rain very hard)
We wanted to play touch football, but now it’s raining cats and dogs, so I guess we’ll stay inside.
*Witches, who supposedly rode their brooms during storms, were often pictured with black cats, which became signs of heavy rain for sailors.
To bark up the wrong tree.
(following the wrong course)
The water industry regulator is not doing so because he believes that local authorities are barking up the wrong tree.
*The origin of the idiom dates back to early 1800s America, when hunting with packs of dogs was very popular. The term was used literally at first when dogs where chasing wrong prey.
To let the cat out of the bag.
(reveal a secret)
The mayor’s visit was to be kept strictly confidential, but someone must have let the cat out of the bag.
*When someone would purchase a pig, the vendor would sneak a cat into the bag instead, cheating the buyer out of the higher price for a pig. It wasn’t until the buyer arrived home and, literally, let the cat out of the bag.
To break a leg.
(to wish someone luck)
Sasha’s family told him to “break a leg” right before he went up on stage.