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    #1

    English counterpart

    Hi,everyone.
    It would be highly appreciated if you could help me with this question.
    In Chinese, my native language, there is a phrase (良莠不齐) which literally means that the crop and the weed grow together, but which always implies that nice guys and bad guys are placed together in a group or that what we see is a mishmash of desirable things and undesirable things. It ofthen gives the hint that what we have is a result which falls short of our expectations but we have no choice but to accept. My Chinese-English dictionary translates it as "the good and the bad are intermingled," but I'm afraid this translation is not to the point. I do not know whether I have explained the meaning of the Chinese phrase clearly.
    My question is, Is there a phrase or expression in English that corresponds to this Chinese phrase?
    Thanks in advance.
    Richard

  1. Barb_D's Avatar
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      • American English
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    #2

    Re: English counterpart

    Hello ohmyrichard,

    I can't think of a good parallel expression right now, but if you said "You can't always separate the wheat from the chaff," the meaning would be similar. It plays on the idiom "to separate the wheat from the chaff": Separate the wheat from the chaff - Idiom Definition - UsingEnglish.com

    • Member Info
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    #3

    Re: English counterpart

    Quote Originally Posted by Barb_D View Post
    Hello ohmyrichard,

    I can't think of a good parallel expression right now, but if you said "You can't always separate the wheat from the chaff," the meaning would be similar. It plays on the idiom "to separate the wheat from the chaff": Separate the wheat from the chaff - Idiom Definition - UsingEnglish.com
    Thanks for your reply. But it is not about you separating anything from the other things, it is about your dissatisfaction with the people in a group are not all so talented or of high character or your dissatisfaction with things you end up having as not all of them are so desirable.
    I hope my further explanation did not offend you.
    Thanks again.
    Richard

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    #4

    Re: English counterpart

    Hi what about this,

    "You have to take the good with the bad"

    Hope this helps

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