Posted by R. Berg on January 26, 2002
In Reply to: It's better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick posted by Word Camel on January 25, 2002
: I have always wondered about the origin of this phrase. I came tantalizingly close to finding it a few years through the magic off Boolean logic and the Internet. I followed a link to a page entitled " Ancient Celtic Sayings", only to find that it was no longer there. I did look at the previous discussion of this in the archives:
: : Eric Partridge, "A Dictionary of Catch Phrases American and British," mentions ". . . poke in the eye . . ." as an Australian item in a group of similar phrases of which he says most seem to have originated late in the 19th century. This group includes "better than a kick in the ass with a frozen boot" (Canadian) and "better than a slap across the belly with a wet fish" (US).
: I am still haunted byt the mising web page and wondering if anyone has come across another explanation that might deny or confirm its "Ancient Celtic" origins.
: Many thanks,
If Google has a retired page stored on its server, you can call it up by clicking "Cached" just below the description of the page. There's another site that serves as an archive of old pages; I don't know its URL.