Posted by Barney on January 05, 2001
In Reply to: The Czech is in the mail posted by R. Berg on January 05, 2001
: : What is the meaning and origin of this phrase?
: It's a pun on (or a misunderstanding of) "The check is in the mail," something that people say on the phone to pacify someone to whom a payment is overdue--perhaps more often in comedies than in real life.
Or, in the UK, 'The cheque is in the mail'. However, are they, in this case, harking back to the days of the crusades when Richard the Lionheart would point an imperious finger to a figure on a horse dressed overall in the finest chain mail and, by exclaiming, "the Czech is in the mail", identify a fellow crusader from middle Europe. It's a thought.