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This side of paradise

Posted by ESC on February 21, 2004

In Reply to: This side of paradise posted by Alex on February 20, 2004

: I'm looking for the origin and meaning of the phrase "this side of (something)" , as in the book title "this side of paradise" ... my impression is that being on "this side of" something means simply NOT being there, but I have encounered some rather more ambiguous uses of he phrase... Can anyone shed some light on the subject?

I thought "this side of paradise" would simply mean here on Earth. But, to muddy the waters further, Merriam-Webster online says:

this side of : short of. ALMOST. An attitude just this side of scandalous.