Posted by Bob on November 14, 2005
In Reply to: Testing the waters posted by R. Berg on November 14, 2005
: : : Has anyone ever heard the phrase 'testing the waters?' - in the meaning of trying out a certain approach / sales policy / etc. to see how it is received before launching it full scale?
: : Yes, it is a very popular phrase and you are correct in your understanding of what it means.
: : It may have derived from the act of bathing a child--you mix in a quantity of hot and cold waters into a tub or whatever and you dip your hand in to test the water to make sure it is not too hot or too cold.
: I test my bath before I sit
: And am always moved to wonderment
: That what chills the finger not a bit
: Is so cold upon the fundament.
: - Ogden Nash
A rare slip up:
I test my bath before I sit,
And I'm always moved to wonderment
That what chills the finger not a bit
Is so frigid upon the fundament.
I thought the last line wasn't the way I remembered it ... and as it turned out, I remembered it wrong, too, using "frigid on" instead of "frigid upon." My way scans better ....