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"Getting ahead"

Posted by Bob on November 27, 2000

In Reply to: "Getting ahead" posted by Bob on November 27, 2000

: : The simple phrase "getting ahead" (financially) is one I've wondered about. I understand its general meaning, but I've been trying to understand what its original sense was.

: : Did it mean to put away money beyond one's expenses? Did it refer to bettering one's lot in life? Did it refer to social climbing? To advancing one's career?

: : Thanks. - Patty

: Happiness, they say, is positive cash flow. There's a famous quote from Dickens which compares income and expenses ... where happiness and misery are defined by which is greater.
: Most people in the world, I'm sure, live from payday to payday. To have something left over, to get ahead of the wolf, is a wonderful feeling.

To contradict myself, the phrase is also widely used to in terms of career progress. The metaphor comes, I think, from racing.