Wednesday, April 21, 2021

Can't Have Your Cake And Eat It Too (MY Eng #11)

This is part of a running series about English idioms - less about language, more about life itself. Previously, we covered 'missing the woods for the trees', 'the elephant in the room', 'practising what you preach', blowing hot and cold', 'no smoke without fire', 'one swallow does not make a summer', 'apples and oranges', 'cut to the chase', 'leave no stone unturned' and 'that's the way the cookie crumbles'.

Fresh off the oven, yet another bakery-infused idiom.

Last time, the mood took a sad turn. Who doesn't love cookies? Who doesn't feel sad when our favourite cookie crumbles before we can even taste in our mouth?

Enough about cookies. How about some cake for a change? But please, don't get greedy. Here's your cake. You can keep it for later, or eat it now. You can't have it both ways.

* * *

Yes, life isn't fair, sometimes. But that doesn't mean we should take more cake than we're entitled to have. Fairness cut both ways. Don't bite more than you can chew (another idiom!).

Of course, it's natural for us to keep our options open. Avoid commitments. To enjoy the best of both worlds (another idiom!).

But life is about making choices. And the most important choices in life are the most difficult ones. Choices, once made, that can't be backed away. Choices that can very well determine your destiny.

Ultimately, every choice that we make has a consequence - for better or for worse. Cause and effect. There's no running away from fate.

* * *

Yes, it would be nice to have an unlimited supply of cakes.

Alas, that's not how life works. Life requires us to make choices. Life is rewarding, but also unforgiving.

But the sooner we choose, the sooner life goes on. Yes, some choices will reward us with more cake. Some choices will leave us empty-handed.

Ultimately, the cake that we have in hand today won't last forever. Just eat it, or pass it on to someone else - before it rots.

Don't be too stuck with yesterday's cake. There are more yummy cakes coming out of the oven today.

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