"That's a great deal to make one word mean," Alice said in a thoughtful tone. "When I make a word do a lot of work like that," said Humpty Dumpty, "I always pay it extra."

Saturday, 26 September 2009

Not my pigeon

To say something is 'not my pigeon' means something is not of material interest to oneself; not one's business; not an activity one would typically engage in under normal circumstances. (Indeed, it can, to some extent, be equated to something being 'not my cup of tea').

I wondered about the origin of this phrase and tried to look it up. The best potential origin I could come upo with was that one's pigeon referred in this context to a 'pigeon hole', the type one finds in the mail rooms of large organisations or by the door of a block of flats, i.e. if it is not in your pigeon hole, it is not addressed to you and, therefore, not your concern or responsibility. The phrase probably has nothiong to do with that but I liked the idea of it!

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