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"Now you're shaping - like Muldoon at a picnic"

Posted by T'Phantom Peer on December 11, 2003

My father-in-law, aged 74, born & brought up just outside Liverpool, uses the expression "Now you're shaping - like Muldoon at a picnic" to mean "now you're getting somewhere", or "now you're making some progress", usually in the context of "doing something better which you previously didn't do very well". He has no idea of the origin of the phrase (but has been using it all his life as far as he knows); I've never heard it used by anyone else. I can't find any references to it anywhere. Has anybody else heard this phrase or have any idea of its origin? Thanks!