Posted by Bob on October 10, 2006
In Reply to: "Hobnail boots going up and silk slippers going down" posted by Simon on October 10, 2006
: My _guess_ would be that the "phrase" suggests that a situation comes which requires a change in attitude, as if changing from a kind person to a rough one, a tough ride ahead. I also smell some sexuality in this phrase. Also, this may well be the saying of a camp instructor to his pupils noting that a harder 'leg' of the trekking is ahead... ;-)
: : my client's son's teacher is searching for the origin of the phrase "hobnail boots going up and silk slippers going down"
: : i've googled till my fingers were raw....no luck.
: : help! thanks!
: : (nets christopher +5 points on his next exam)
I don't know if it's original with the author of this article
but his meaning is clear. On the stairway of time, hard workers are rising (in his example, the Chinese nation) and pampered slackers (the western world, here) are moving down.