Posted by RRC on April 04, 2006
In Reply to: Re: Every time a coconut! posted by Bob on April 04, 2006
: : : Does anyone know the correct usage and origin of the phrase " Every time a coconut!"?
: : It comes from the fairground game in which balls are thrown at coconuts balanced on poles. If you manage to knock over a coconut you win it. Hence, in your phrase, 'every one is a winner': you win every time.
: : DFG
: This is, I presume, strictly UK usage? I'd never heard it stateside, so I went googling. Many of the quotes dug up by google could be translated "every time," as if the "a coconut" were superfluous. I didn't get a strong sense that "winning" was as much an issue as inevitability. Did I mis-read the results?
It's a British game called a coconut shy that's popular at funfairs, church fetes, etc. It's not that you win every time, it's that everytime you win, you win a coconut. While winning one coconut would be okay, there's not much point to winning a lot of coconuts.