grasp the nettle love

grasp the nettle

Definitions

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. To act boldly, especially when there are short-term adverse consequences.

Etymologies

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From the short-term skin irritation caused by the stinging nettle.

Examples

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Comments

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  • slightly thanatotic childhood, yarb?

    July 29, 2008

  • I was surrounded by nettles as a child and there was indeed a rural myth that if you gripped tightly you wouldn't suffer as much. I tried it on more than once occasion - my friends and I often had impromptu nettle-grasping contests - but it always hurt like hell.

    Another thing we used to do was run very fast downhill and see who would be the last to stop before the barbed wire fence.

    July 29, 2008

  • i've never so much as brushed the nettle! or gazed upon the nettle! (gladly, though — itching is second only to literal burning on my list of intolerable physical sensations; i was ready to skin myself a week after my first brush with poison ivy.

    speaking of: if you like your science slathered in heebie-jeebies, read this.)

    bilby: ha, that poor girl!

    July 29, 2008

  • Funny memory of this. I was out one Sunday giving a walking tour of the city to my new flatmate in Italy, a Korean girl. As we were passing through a park she came over all wistful, plucked up a handful of greenery and took a deep sniff ...

    She still had welts all over her hands and nose when she turned up at university for her first classes the following day. The university people thought she might have bird flu or some exotic disease - she didn't have enough Italian to explain what had happened - so they made her wear rubber gloves and a face mask for her first week.

    Benvenuta in Italia!

    July 29, 2008

  • I'm not sure about that, qroqqa. I mean, it seems to make sense on the surface with this particular phrase, but if you look at the other phrases that mean something similar (that bestiary listed below), they don't seem to imply that something's going to hurt any less depending on how you do it. They just mean you have to grit your teeth and do it, knowing it's going to hurt.

    Eesh, I'm smarting from the time I got stinging nettle on my leg. I'm leaving this page now. *eek*

    July 29, 2008

  • This expression is often used as if by grasping it firmly you won't suffer the sting you would if you'd lightly brushed it. My father, however, trusting in this, once tried it as a kid. He says he still wakes up at night smarting from it. So I shan't be trying it.

    July 29, 2008

  • Ouch! Have you ever grasped nettle? Damn, that's an illustrative phrase all right!

    July 29, 2008

  • tongue-pleasing alternative to 'bite the bullet,' 'bell the cat,' 'take the bull by the horns,' etc.

    July 29, 2008