Are you out of kilter or just pulling the wool?

@JudyEv (134917)
Bunbury, Australia
December 3, 2016 3:30am CST
I'm a bit stuck for something to write about but luckily I've been saving common sayings which seem a bit strange if you start pondering on their origins. One of these is, 'out of kilter' which I used in a comment recently. Where did such a saying stem from? So off to Daddy Google and it seems 'kilter' is a variation of the old English word 'kelter' which means 'good health' or 'good condition'. So if you or things are 'out of kilter' then you or they are out of order or in poor spirits. Another phrase that has come up recently was 'not for all the tea in China'. I didn't realise China has been a huge grower of tea for many years and still produces about a quarter of the world's supply. So that explains that one. And because things often go in threes, the other saying I noted down some time ago was to do with 'pulling the wool over someone's eyes' meaning to deceive or hoodwink. This apparently originated back in the 17th century, when people would wear elaborate woolly-looking wigs. If these were placed crookedly on the head the vision would be obscured. Apparently this is the most likely origin of the saying. And what better opportunity than to post another photo of Herc? Except it's actually Oscar, and Herc was running around below.
20 people like this
20 responses
@LadyDuck (176508)
• Switzerland
3 Dec 16
I always appreciate to see photo of Herc. We do not mention tea and China, but we say "not for all salt in the seas".
5 people like this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
3 Dec 16
So your saying has a very similar meaning. :)
1 person likes this
@cacay1 (33203)
• Cagayan De Oro, Philippines
3 Dec 16
@LadyDuck , China is abundant of tea. Their tea there is superb, medicinal. I also like the post,I learned a lot.
2 people like this
@LadyDuck (176508)
• Switzerland
3 Dec 16
@cacay1 And the seas and oceans are full of salt.
1 person likes this
@Asylum (48224)
• Manchester, England
3 Dec 16
China has long been a prominent producer of tea. As for "out of kilter", I have not encountered the term before.
2 people like this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
3 Dec 16
'Out of kilter' is not uncommon to me which makes me surprised that you don't know the term.
3 people like this
@Asylum (48224)
• Manchester, England
3 Dec 16
@JudyEv It is totally new to me. My mother used to have a silly saying of "You look like you have lost a shilling and found a penny" meaning that you look unhappy. It would make more sense to just say that you look as though you have lost a shilling.
1 person likes this
• Midland, Michigan
3 Dec 16
@JudyEv We use it in the US too, so it's common to me.
2 people like this
@Happy2BeMe (74936)
• Canada
3 Dec 16
I like reading these random facts. It one of those things you don't think much up when you say it. Great picture of Herc.
2 people like this
@cacay1 (33203)
• Cagayan De Oro, Philippines
3 Dec 16
@Happy2BeMe , Me too, I like the post much.I learned many things.
2 people like this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
3 Dec 16
Thanks. Since I've been on myLot I am more aware that sometimes people have trouble understanding colloquial sayings that I used to use without even thinking. So now if I write 'out of kilter' I tend to think 'that's a funny saying. I wonder how it came about'. I also wonder who will have trouble trying to work out its meaning.
2 people like this
@Happy2BeMe (74936)
• Canada
5 Dec 16
@JudyEv That is true. I know I have had a few comments about saying I used and people didn't get what I meant.
1 person likes this
@xFiacre (5229)
• Ireland
3 Dec 16
@judyev 'All the tea in China' always conjured up exotic images for me in childhood. I also used to play in a tea real estate in Malawi as a child and stayed a while around t's estates in India. I especially remember a tea caddy mu great aunt had - black and red with a picture of a Chinese man in a rice paddy. And the smell when that caddy was opened was intoxicating.
2 people like this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
3 Dec 16
I admit to being even ignoranter in earlier years. I had no idea China produced tea.
@cacay1 (33203)
• Cagayan De Oro, Philippines
3 Dec 16
@xFiacre , When I was teaching in China for few months, I noticed that every time I dined, tea is first served.Tea in China is flowing like a river. China is rich in tea.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
3 Dec 16
@cacay1 This was something that I wasn't aware of.
@TRBRocks420 (82721)
• Banks, Oregon
3 Dec 16
Very interesting about the saying and, I always thought it meant not feeling well, also cool picture of Hercules and, Oscar are they friends?
2 people like this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
3 Dec 16
So you were right in thinking it meant not feeling well. Oscar and Herc were friends although Oscar was a bit of a bully. We had to have him put down probably about two years ago.
@cacay1 (33203)
• Cagayan De Oro, Philippines
3 Dec 16
@TRBRocks420, Very nice post, educational and informative. They are friends hehehe.
1 person likes this
@bagarad (12742)
• Paso Robles, California
10 Feb
Love these stories. I've always known what these saying meant, but I didn't know their origins, except "for all the tea in China." I love learning more about words.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
10 Feb
I am a 'word person' too - much more than a maths person although I found algebra very intriguing.
1 person likes this
@bagarad (12742)
• Paso Robles, California
10 Feb
@JudyEv I liked Algebra 1, but got stuck when we got to square roots. I wish we'd been able to use calculators like they do in schools today. Long division was not my forte. I hated it. I liked geometry, though. It was more like working a puzzle.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
11 Feb
@bagarad That's how I viewed algebra - as working out a puzzle. And it felt great if you ever managed to get the answer right!
1 person likes this
@just4him (127167)
• Green Bay, Wisconsin
5 Dec 16
It's always nice to know the origin of familiar sayings. Nice picture of Oscar.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
5 Dec 16
Thanks. It can be hard to get good photos of animals.
1 person likes this
@just4him (127167)
• Green Bay, Wisconsin
5 Dec 16
@JudyEv How did he get up there?
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
6 Dec 16
@just4him He just jumped from the high side. The bale is on a slope so it wasn't just a huge jump from the high side but I was still surprised that he jumped up.
1 person likes this
@valmnz (12744)
• New Zealand
4 Dec 16
Love these sayings. I've heard them all before and used them, but not for a long time! Great photo
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
4 Dec 16
Oscar was such a wag. Adult sheep don't usually 'play' much. They are usually rather staid but he was always out for a bit of fun.
1 person likes this
@valmnz (12744)
• New Zealand
4 Dec 16
@JudyEv did he get up there on his own?
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
4 Dec 16
@valmnz Yes, he did which surprised me. Just jumped up from the high side. Did it twice but fell off the third time and hid for 20 secs then came round the bale and bunted Herc as though it was all his fault.
1 person likes this
@PainsOnSlate (20535)
• Canada
4 Dec 16
Love the photo, there is a sheep farm near my daughter's place, there are dogs in with the sheep, they stand on the bails of hay, when I stopped the car to get out and get a photo they came running and barking at me like I was the bad guy... Scared me back into my car... I didn't know the kilter origin so thanks. The others i knew and I've used...
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
4 Dec 16
The dogs are probably Maremmas. There are several breeds of dogs which live out with flocks of sheep, goats or even chickens to protect from predators. You must have looked big and bad!! What a shame you weren't able to get a photo.
1 person likes this
• Canada
4 Dec 16
@JudyEv I got a photo - I will look for it and leave it here, the dogs just made me get back into my car...They scared me but my daughter said they are trained to protect the sheep and wouldn't come out of the pasture... He looks like he was smiling but his bark was not friendly....
• Midland, Michigan
3 Dec 16
Your title made me laugh because today I am out of kilter both in the idea of that and the meaning of the term. I'm out of good health or a good condition. I'm not as bad off as some, but worse off than I was before going to work yesterday. Ah, well. It is what it is, I guess. I'm not moping about it, I have the day off work and I don't want to waste it. I've done some dishes and mopped the floor. Granted our floor is so old that I need to mop it about three times to get it the best. I mop it first with a swifer type mop and then again with either a string mop or something similar to a swifter using solution that gets sprayed onto the floor as I go. That floor gets out of kilter so quickly that I ususally don't make it to all three moppings. I want to get it there now because my brother will be coming over in the next week or so to replace some plumbing so we can again use or dishwasher.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
4 Dec 16
What a pain to have to wash your floor three times! Once is more than enough for me. It will be good to have the dishwasher going again.
1 person likes this
• Midland, Michigan
4 Dec 16
@JudyEv Yes, it surely is a pain. Maybe a day in the future when all our other bills are caught up we can afford to replace our sixty year old floor. That's mainly why it doesn't clean so well and also because my husband can't take off his shoes while in the house since he has a fake leg.
@teamfreak16 (41407)
• Colorado Springs, Colorado
3 Dec 16
Interesting factoids! I never knew.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
4 Dec 16
Your knowledge base has increased. lol
1 person likes this
@Corbin5 (116145)
• United States
3 Dec 16
Well, Oscar looks fabulous!!! Yes, so interesting to know the meanings of those old sayings. Still wonder the meaning of my mother's often said saying, "Madder than a wet hen." Apparently hens despise being wet.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
3 Dec 16
Yes, I've heard that too and hens always run for cover if it starts to rain.
1 person likes this
@jaboUK (55053)
• United Kingdom
3 Dec 16
I didn't know the kilter one, but knew the other two.. Nice picture of Oscar - you don't have him now do you?
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
3 Dec 16
No, we had to have him put down a year or two ago. He was a bit of a bully but had a real personality.
1 person likes this
@RasmaSandra (19751)
• Daytona Beach, Florida
3 Dec 16
Oscar looks like the king of the hill. I too like all kinds of saying and finding out where they came from. I like elaborate word like he bamboozled them and it means Bamboozled definition, to deceive or get the better of (someone) by trickery,
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
4 Dec 16
Flummox is another great word meaning something similar - well, probably more to confuse than deceive.
1 person likes this
@amadeo (73281)
• United States
3 Dec 16
thank you for sharing your wonderful information on this.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
4 Dec 16
You're welcome. There are some strange sayings out there.
@Juliaacv (33290)
• Canada
3 Dec 16
That Herc takes such great pictures! I didn't know where or how these sayings originated, thanks for sharing, I'll remember this.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
3 Dec 16
He has given me a lot of material for discussions. :)
1 person likes this
@epiffanie (10404)
• Australia
3 Dec 16
That's a cute photo of the sheep ;) .. and thanks for sharing the origins of those sayings ..
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
4 Dec 16
Did you find it hard learning some of the strange English sayings?
@cacay1 (33203)
• Cagayan De Oro, Philippines
3 Dec 16
Wonderful creature in the picture and wonderful descriptions of words not used most of the time, but so important.Thanks for sharing this very nice post. awesome.
1 person likes this
@JudyEv (134917)
• Bunbury, Australia
4 Dec 16
I'm glad you enjoyed it. :)
@DaddyEvil (25922)
• Aurora, Missouri
14 Dec 16
Uhm... I've been known to use all three of those sayings when talking to someone, Judy.... They are a bit old fashioned here, but everyone knows what I'm saying when I use them... shrug! I was a bit surprised nobody seemed to understand the other day when I said something about coal raking... It is related to "being raked over a bed of hot coals"... It didn't seem too difficult to me.
@Jessicalynnt (47880)
• Centralia, Missouri
5 Dec 16
the fact that there is a sheep ON the hay bale amuses me. What a cute little Oscar