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ESL forum > Grammar and Linguistics > Help with an idiom    

Help with an idiom

vikoca79 (f)

Help with an idiom
Hi dear colleagues,

Could anyone explain the meaning of the following phrase:

�It �s not rocket salad! �

I have some assumptions about the meaning like "It �s not so difficult" because this phrase resembles "It �s not rocket science."

Native speakers please help!


28 Dec 2011      


Maybe it �s just a play on words, someone starts it and then it gets repeated.. I found this refence:
Other areas of professional endeavour have their own mysterious poetry of clich�, notoriously management-speak: "the elephant in the room"; "it �s not rocket science" (I once heard someone say "it �s not rocket salad"); "run it up the flagpole"; "shoot the puppy"; "blue-sky thinking": these all have their own innate beauty and even energy.

28 Dec 2011     


Are you sure it �s an idiom? And that they were not talking about salad? I love rocket in my salad ...

28 Dec 2011     


It sounds to me as though the person who said "It �s not rocket salad" was just trying to be funny.  The expression is "It �s not rocket science", of course!  Sometimes we deliberately get expressions wrong or mispronounce them in an attempt to be humourous.  I �m afraid that the only example that comes to mind now is the mispronunciation of the French �merci beaucoup � which some people replace with �murky bucket �.  I �m sure that my fellow native speakers can think of some more appropriate examples!

28 Dec 2011     

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I think they meant the "rocket" salad which is also a french name for a particular salad.

28 Dec 2011     


"it �s not rocked salad" means for example the boss mad with his employee and the employee said "it �s not rocked salad". it is just a ignored and he didn �t afraid with the words that the other person said.

28 Dec 2011     


I agree,  It �s not an idiom  it �s a type of green salad.
  These are rocket leaves.

28 Dec 2011     

vikoca79 (f)

Thanx for the replies everyone.

I �m aware that rocket is also a kind of vegetable, which is often used in salads. The thing is, there is this British sit-com, "Love Soup", where a blonde character uses this phrase often and isn �t talking about food, but it is a reaction to situations, but I can �t figure out the meaning.

Thanx anyway!

28 Dec 2011     

Pauline Burke MSc

Sometimes people change well known sayings  in order to give the impression that they are not very bright. Its funny.  The former prime minister of Ireland, Bertie Ahern, was well known for this. He once said "Don�t upset the apple pie" instead of �the apple cart�.  In a TV show, used in conjunction with a blonde (who are already stereo-typed as being dim) my guess is that it is to make the character appear stupid.

28 Dec 2011