Sweating like a pig
By Judy Evans
April 6, 2017 8:41am CST
When I get an idea for a post, I often make a note on a Word document where I write my articles. One such note simply says 'sweating like a pig'. I have no idea what prompted this phrase originally. As far as I'm aware, pigs don't sweat which is why they wallow in mud, particularly in hot weather. This helps cool them off. Dogs don't 'sweat' in the normal sense of the word either. But I'll leave that for another post perhaps. The phrase 'sweating like a pig' doesn't refer to pigs of the porcine type but to pig iron which is the name given to the first step when iron ore is smelted. Pig iron is brittle and of limited use. It is heated to extreme temperatures before being moved to moulds. It is dangerous to move the metal at such high temperatures but once the metal starts to cool it 'sweats' and droplets form on the surface of the metal. Once pig iron reaches this point, it is safe to transport it to moulds. The photo is of genuine artificial pigs in a mall in Adelaide, South Australia.
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• Bunbury, Australia
In the early days of smelting, the iron was poured into sand moulds. There was a common runner which fed a number of smaller ingot-sized beds. These looked like suckling pigs. The runner was called a 'sow' and the individual ingots pigs.
• Melbourne, Florida
@JudyEv When visiting up north last year we took my grandson to lunch and being we were down by his house we told him to pick a place. We went to a little restaurant that was in the middle of a busy town in New Jersey. It specialized in pork and outside the door was a huge pig. I don't know what kind of material it was made from but some kind of metal. The place was packed and we waited outside for an hour but it was well worth the wait. We met a couple from another state and they found out about the place online. I hope to get there again sometime.
• United States
@JudyEv Yep! I knew about dogs, that's why they pant. Did you know that cats can pant too? I have a cat that pants and it's nothing medical. The vet seemed shocked when I told her the cat pants, so she checked him out and he's totally healthy, he just likes to pant. It's pretty funny when he does it.