Making mice that bark

Posted by Lewis on July 17, 2003

In Reply to: Making mice that bark posted by Fahad on July 17, 2003

: What does "making mice that bark" mean? Making a mountain out of a molehill?

I think it might be a reference to innovation for innovation's sake. What a triumph it would be to genetically modify a mouse so that it barked! (and what a waste of research money.)

Alternatively, your mountain/molehill reference could be another aspect - there was a film by Peter Sellers in which a small bankrupt country, [Ruritania?] declares war on America so that after they lose they can qualify for foreign aid - it was called "the mouse that roared" - so perhaps the expression means to turn something ineffective and "safe" into something that sounds quite dangerous, but isn't.

If it was a misprint for "making mice that bank" - it might go some way to explain the "more bodies found behind bank till" - referred to above.