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    #1

    A trick of the tail

    anybody have any clues as to meaning and origin of this phrase?

  1. AlainK
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    #2

    Re: A trick of the tail

    Good question, what's the genesis of this expression?...

    A hat-trick performed upside down?
    Last edited by AlainK; 13-Oct-2005 at 17:46.

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    #3

    Re: A trick of the tail

    This is more of a guess than fact!

    But if you look at the Genesis album cover from which the saying is taken:

    http://phil_collins_fr.site.voila.fr...ms/08trick.jpg

    you will see a scene including the devil who is know for both his 'tricks' and 'forked tail' in popular folklore. So I am guessing that it may mean 'The devils works' or 'devils tricky deeds'.

    In other words "A trick (crafty deed) of the tail (devil)"

    Purely guesswork!


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    #4

    Re: A trick of the tail

    I have another answer. Again a guesswork. I read in one anonymous quotation that:
    The reason a dog has so many friends
    is because he wags his tail
    instead of his tongue.

    'A trick of the tail' means' skill of having many friends.

    I want to be corrected.
    Asesh

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    #5

    Re: A trick of the tail

    The reason a dog has so many friends
    is because he wags his tail
    instead of his tongue.


    A wagging tongue means that you gossip!! A play on words and a comical look at why dogs have so many friends.

    It simply means "If you talk badly about people a lot, you are sure to have few friends".

    I would say that your thoery of "'A trick of the tail' means' skill of having many friends." is not very likely, as you cannot usually apply a logical extention to a saying or idiom and it wouldn't fit in with the original source which are known for their 'darker' subject matters - usually sourced from classical or biblical references in their early albums.... eg.

    'Genesis to Revelation' (Biblical), 'Nursery Cryme (crime/rhyme wordplay)', 'Wind & Wuthering (Wuthering Heights?)', 'And the Word (Jesus) was' etc.

    "Lamb lies down on Broadway" - biography extract - the story of Rael, the subject in the album: "Though Rael was portrayed by Gabriel on stage as a punk wearing leather jacket and jeans, the imagery of the lyrics owes more to the supernatural than subways and sidewalks. Rael's journey through his subconscious to eventual self-discovery includes a confrontation with death, 'The Supernatural Anaesthetist'; falling in love, 'The Lamia' (which are female demons in classical mythology); and sensual gratification, 'The Colony of Slippermen'. There follows a nasty castration followed by the comical theft of the dismembered organ by a bird, and his final self-realization. The group were annoyed at Peter's delay in delivering the lyrics. But to him it was still rushed and he was not able to revise the story as much as he would have liked, which explains why some of the lyrics are so obscure. "

    Deep & dark enough for you?!

    Which is why I suspect 'Trick of the tail' is a similarly 'darker' and 'deeper' subject matter.
    Last edited by hobbes; 30-Oct-2005 at 17:05.

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