Posted by Word Camel on June 03, 2003
In Reply to: "Searching for that golden ring" posted by Addison on June 03, 2003
: I have never heard this saying before and I was hoping someone could shed some light on it for me. This girl I know claims she is always "Searching for that golden ring". What exactly does that mean? Thanks.
...in the books I have or on the internet. I suspect it may be a corruption of the phrase, 'reaching for the brass ring", which refers to the practice of reaching from the carrousel while it is moving to grab a brass ring suspended by its side. The prize for grabbing the brass ring was usually a free ride.
It means to strive for something just out of reach. I think it hints that the think may not be as valuable as it appears. Brass is shiny like gold but isn't valuable.
For an extensive discussion of this, jousting and other only semi-related but interesting things, see the link below: