What's "ugly oyster"? "If you want your page to look good, limit yourself to a few different families and come up with pairs of fonts that look good together. But hey, if you don't want your page to look good, then the world is your ugly oyster. Go forth and fontify." 1. Can't one pick a specific meaning of it because they used it as a way of metaphor? 2. Is it a normal and safe word to say any time?
Jul 14, 2019 8:02 AM
Answers · 3
I feel it's only worth being a comment, Dolco, but thank you. Someone might give you a better answer. I didn't really even touch on "go forth and fontify", which is a play on a well-known phrase from the Christian Bible, "go forth and multiply". "Fontify" isn't really a word, so far as I know, or if it is it's a very new word, and I imagine that here he means, sarcastically, "go ahead and use lots of fonts", drawing on awareness of that Bible phrase to imply a meaning for "fontify". I hope this makes sense.
July 14, 2019
@Michael Thank you very much!!!! Why don't you make this the real answer, not just a comment? I would gladly pick it as the best answer :D
July 14, 2019
"The world is your oyster, and you are its pearl." This proverb, in many little variants, is so well known in English that it is often twisted around into fresh forms. In nature, if an everday oyster gets a speck of grit in its shell, it can produce a beautiful and valuable pearl around that grit. So, symbolically, you get something of great value in a commonplace setting. Here, the writer is being sarcastic. He wants people to use simple, coherent designs for web pages. But he knows he has no control, so he says "if you don't want your page to look good", then you can pick and choose from everything in the world - which echoes from "the world is your oyster". But just to make sure the reader understands his disapproval, he calls it an "ugly oyster". Incidentally, one line of humour in English comes from accidentally or deliberately misusing words, and there is an example here. A corruption of this phrase is when a character says "the world is my lobster" - usually a deliberate misuse, but still designed to emphasise the speaker's status as "the pearl." I hope this helps. So, to question 1 : there is a specific meaning, as explained here. Question 2 : "oyster" is a safe word to use; it's just a shellfish. Speaking symbolically always carries extra risk of being misunderstood.
July 14, 2019
Still haven’t found your answers?
Write down your questions and let the native speakers help you!