I found myself using the phrase selling like hot cakes earlier this week. It suddenly occurred to me that this is a very strange expression. I have never eaten a hot cake, and I have never seen one for sale. Perhaps that's because they sell out so quickly.
Hot cakes? Pretty odd.
Jen thinks it might refer to fairy cakes (what the Americans call cup cakes), which are particularly tasty when eaten warm, fresh out of the oven. That's as maybe, but, if so, shouldn't the expression be selling like warm fairy cakes?
But even if Jen's interpretation is right, do warm fairy cakes sell particularly well these days? If they do, I've certainly never noticed. In this day and age, wouldn't it be more appropriate to say selling like iPods, or something like that?
…All of which got Fitz and me talking in the pub last night about the Fosbury Flop. Good old Dick Fosbury is one of those totally cool individuals who have had a manoeuvre named after them. His particular manoeuvre revolutionised the world of high jump. It added several inches to most people's high jumping ability. No high jumper in their right mind would be without it. Indeed, when it comes to high jumping technique, it's the only game in town—it has been a massive success.
So why's it called the Fosbury Flop?