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0bvious (4)

Pithy and incisive

"You're not in traffic, you are traffic" and "Prohibition isn't regulation. It's the absence of regulation" are two phrases I've come across that pithily, quickly and directly sum up some situation. They help flip the usual terms of the discussion around, and provide insight. Do you know more?
posted by the man of twists and turns on Jul 8, 2014 - 54 answers

Convince me that that life is not struggle

Metaphors are claimed to affect how we see the world and live our lives. In the case of someone brought up to believe that life is tough, reading on the topic hasn't helped a great deal. For example, Lakoff and Johnson's "Metaphors we live by" suggests that "life is a container" or "life is a gambling game". If you wanted to move on from believing that "life is struggle", what metaphor would you find useful?
posted by Prof Iterole on May 30, 2014 - 16 answers

More examples of a specific type of metaphorical 'pun' in song lyrics?

I really like metaphors and I really like song lyrics. Every once in a while I run across a particular type of cleverly extended metaphor in a song lyric. I'm trying to develop this idea a bit and looking for more examples of this particular thing. I've included some explanatory examples I've found. [more inside]
posted by iamkimiam on Jun 22, 2013 - 17 answers

Use of The City as a metaphor for the Internet/Web

I am looking for examinations of the Internet and World Wide Web that use the structure and/or history of the city as a metaphor. [more inside]
posted by 0bvious on Apr 12, 2013 - 9 answers

Please help me find a book published in Argentina, now out of print.

Hello dear Mefites. I am looking to buy or borrow this very-hard-to-find book: Ramacciotti, Sandra and Rodil, María Victoria (2006): Economics: Glossary of Metaphorical Usage - Glosario Económico - Financiero Uso Metafórico de Voces. Buenos Aires: Editorial Quorum. [more inside]
posted by ipsative on Mar 11, 2013 - 9 answers

Sports metaphors for the unsporty

I came across the phrase "in his/her/my wheelhouse" last year for the first time and was shocked to learn there's an entire genre of writing with its own set of metaphors that I know nothing about. Sportswriting! [more inside]
posted by spamandkimchi on Jan 20, 2013 - 38 answers

Examples of timelines in movies and other pop culture?

I'm looking for examples of visual timelines in movies, video games, or fiction. Scenes where a span of time is represented metaphorically, preferably as a physical object, diagram, or action. A good example is this scene from Me and You and Everyone We Know in which two characters use a street as a visual metaphor for their potential relationship. [more inside]
posted by oulipian on Nov 13, 2012 - 17 answers

There is no Jay Smooth video about this one.

I have never used "Jew" as a verb. I no longer "welsh" on debts, and I haven't used "gyp" since I was educated on the racism behind that term. Do I also need to stop using terms like "Mexican standoff", "Chinese firedrill", and "kabuki dance" if I intentionally don't want to create offense to a reasonable person in another cultural group? I grew up in very homogeneous territory and so I'm still learning. Please school me. I love words, I love colorful language and descriptors, but I don't want to be an ass. Words matter.
posted by availablelight on Sep 17, 2012 - 58 answers

Sloppy MicroChips: Can a fair comparison be made between biological and silicon entropy?

Was reading about microchips that are designed to allow a few mistakes (known as 'Sloppy Chips'), and pondering equivalent kinds of 'coding' errors and entropy in biological systems. Can a fair comparison be made between the two? [more inside]
posted by 0bvious on Jun 5, 2012 - 4 answers

Improbable Seas

Give me some examples in media of the creation/summoning/existence of an improbable sea. [more inside]
posted by facehugger on Mar 19, 2012 - 22 answers

extended metaphor

Please help me find a short story or poem that functions as an extended metaphor. Preferably one as obscure or ambiguous in its meaning as possible. [more inside]
posted by leibniz on Nov 21, 2011 - 22 answers

No, "she likes sexy times" is not a simile...siiiiiiiiigh...

What are some interesting, unique, different and effective ways to teach figurative language to high schoolers? [more inside]
posted by guster4lovers on Oct 3, 2011 - 12 answers

Poem about life as a tree?

What is the poem about branches of a tree, i.e. choices in life, withering when the narrator can't bring herself to pick one? [more inside]
posted by ramenopres on Jul 18, 2011 - 4 answers

God was the first to teach by interpretive dance.

Is "The Devil was the first to teach by metaphor" a real saying? [more inside]
posted by Panjandrum on Jun 10, 2011 - 5 answers

Are giant steps what you take, walking on The Sun (apologies to The Police)?

Can anyone tell me, well, ANYTHING about a person (hypothetically) standing on the sun? [more inside]
posted by argonauta on May 16, 2011 - 44 answers

Readin' time's here!

Do you know of any written stories, fiction or otherwise (but not movies) with language usage similar to that in Mad Max: Beyond Thunderdome or The Dark Knight Returns? Example of what I'm looking for are after the break. [more inside]
posted by Brandon Blatcher on Mar 23, 2011 - 30 answers

You mean Paul McCartney was in a band before Wings?

"You mean Paul McCartney was in a band before Wings?" I'm looking for a modern equivalent to this phrase, meant to express the youthful ignorance of history, even very significant history. Especially when such ignorance surfaces in a way that's jarring to folks who were there. [more inside]
posted by Myself on Jan 29, 2011 - 88 answers

Help me understand Danny Boyle's "Sunshine"

Help me understand the metaphor behind the "monster" in Danny Boyle's "Sunshine." I found this a stunning film, but the appearance of the "zombie" took my experience off-track and genre-shifted it. I understand that this was a significant element, but why? And what does it signify (for you?) I watched it years ago, and it's still bugging me!
posted by andreinla on Oct 12, 2010 - 23 answers

What's this anvil doing in my backpack?

Who came up with the "backpack metaphor" for writing fiction? [more inside]
posted by MShades on Sep 12, 2010 - 2 answers

Damn the... something besides torpedoes.

"Damn the torpedoes!"... without all the torpedoes? Help me find the right metaphor. [more inside]
posted by eleyna on Aug 11, 2010 - 37 answers

It's kind of like...

I'm trying to write something about how "once I started researching this project, I realized how the subject was infinite: One revelation opened up a new line of research, which opened up another line of research..." What is the metaphor/simile I'm thinking of? [more inside]
posted by pipti on May 17, 2010 - 32 answers

Technology as a Metaphor

I'm a big fan of Art items that use technology as decoration. I found this wonderful album cover, and I was wondering if anyone knows of anything of that sort. It can be anything that uses Electronics, Technology or Telecommunication as a metaphor, decoration or usable out of context. Thank you!
posted by lipsum on Feb 14, 2010 - 10 answers

A metaphor for the Web

If could compare the Web to something tangible what would it be? Do you find any metaphor suiting the Web as it is, as it developed and what it might become?
posted by fifigyuri on Jul 20, 2009 - 18 answers

What's the term for the kind of metaphor King uses?

Is there a term for the particular type of metaphor that Martin Luther King Jr. used repeatedly in his "I Have a Dream" speech? [more inside]
posted by Janey Complainy on Jan 15, 2009 - 4 answers

A perfect phrase for traffic

When you're going against traffic, is that bad? Of course not, even though it sounds bad. And if you're going with traffic -- that's bad, even though it sounds good. Confusion is built in. Here's the QX: Years ago I heard a perfect phrase for this. Something like "If we leave at three, traffic's our friend." Maybe that was it. But has anybody ever heard something along these lines. Thx!
posted by Brzht on Jan 4, 2009 - 20 answers

LiteraryFilter: Meaning of "Buried Talents" by Richard Matheson

I recently read the short story "Buried Talents" by Richard Matheson (of "I Am Legend" fame (Amazon link). What does it mean? Short summary: a strange man is uncannily successful at beating a carnival game; when he leaves, the man running the game (who had been getting flustered), appears very ill. [more inside]
posted by bangitliketmac on Nov 29, 2008 - 4 answers

Swing the pig iron hammer!

Just exactly what does "swing the big-eyed rabbit" (as sung by the Cramps) mean? [more inside]
posted by ostranenie on Apr 21, 2008 - 10 answers

How to craft a programmer's lens?

Help me think in terms of programming metaphors. [more inside]
posted by Burhanistan on Jan 23, 2008 - 8 answers

Wolves at the Door

Wolf imagery and depression. References? [more inside]
posted by ZenMasterThis on Nov 30, 2007 - 10 answers

Examples of 'The Infinite' in Myth and Their Effect on Conditions of Truth

I am searching for examples of The Infinite, or the immeasurably large, in our mythologies and archetypes. I am also interested in the categories of Truth which came out of the emergence of Western, ontological thought. Does the trust in a rationally conceivable reality deny us the infinity of the mythological realm? By rooting ourselves in the present, and denying atemporal mythologies, do we also deny the infinite origins from where we came? [more inside]
posted by 0bvious on Nov 28, 2007 - 22 answers

Analogy whiz

What's the difference between a metaphor, allegory, simile, and analogy? [more inside]
posted by Mach3avelli on Sep 27, 2007 - 14 answers

we live in a yellow submarine, we drink red red wine, and we sing the blues

suggest some fun, upbeat, likeable songs that mention specific colours? [more inside]
posted by twistofrhyme on Aug 21, 2007 - 55 answers

I need a word!

I need a word! [more inside]
posted by tabubilgirl on Aug 19, 2007 - 35 answers

Strangling the monster in the crib

What are the origins of the idiom "strangle the monster in the crib"?
posted by commander_cool on Jul 10, 2007 - 7 answers

"Mistah Kurtz - he dead."

[Man’s-Journey-to-find-himself-Filter]: I am looking for works of film and fiction that employ the imagery of traversing a difficult path/passageway as a metaphor for man’s inner journey toward connection with his unconscious shadow (in the Jungian sense of the term). [more inside]
posted by numinous on Mar 2, 2007 - 37 answers

What is a good metaphor and a good analogy for this phenomenon?

I need a metaphor and an analogy for an application of social network theory. [more inside]
posted by k8t on Oct 21, 2006 - 15 answers

I am not teh smarts.

What are some good image metaphors for "intelligence"? Lightbulbs, brains, computers, networks.... etc... looking for concepts, suggestions or stock images. [more inside]
posted by skrike on Sep 6, 2006 - 14 answers

The Protagonist: An Overview

The Protagonist: What can you tell me? [more inside]
posted by 0bvious on Jun 8, 2006 - 17 answers

The Anthropology of Metaphor?

Where can I find more writing about metaphor? I vaguely remember reading something about how, when machines became ubiquitous, people began understanding their lives in terms of machines. I'm looking for that sort of thing. [more inside]
posted by Aghast. on May 19, 2006 - 21 answers

A great chimerical epithet?

In "What Metaphors Mean" Donald Davidson refers to a critic who called Tolstoy "a great moralizing infant". Who was that critic, and in what work was Tolstoy so called?
posted by kenko on Mar 19, 2006 - 10 answers

Sex Songs Sisguised as Food

MusicFilter: I am looking for songs of any genre that use food as a metaphor for sex. The two songs that I could come up with are Mississippi John Hurt's Candyman and Van Halen's Ice Cream Man. Thanks so much.
posted by captainscared on Aug 22, 2005 - 59 answers

Should metaphor be taken from photography?

Should metaphor be taken from photography, or should photos only be approached (or critiqued) as realist?
posted by the fire you left me on Apr 1, 2004 - 12 answers

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