Hold Your Horses!

I’m sure you’ve heard the phrase “hold your horses”
For me, and anyone I have asked recently, this phrase is generally used in regards to telling someone to calm down.  In fact, if you google it, you actually come up with a definition:


At this point in time,  I guess you can use it in the context of everyone putting up their Christmas decorations right after Halloween. Literally on November 1st. Come on man, hold your horses! Thanksgiving comes first! Mostly, however, I feel like it’s kind of a scolding phrase. Like telling a child to hold his horses and wait for the candy after his dinner… Is that just me?

Anyway, just this morning, I came into work to find an email from one of my customers in the UK about a lost package my company had sent to him.  I was in the process of getting ready to call UPS to find out what happened to the box, and then I get this message from him, word for word:

“Hold your horses- they might be able to locate it.”  I thought this was hilarious.  I don’t even know why- maybe because I do associate this phrase with sternly talking to children, or scolding someone.   I continued to laugh about this for the next hour. “Can you believe he told me to “hold my horses” ?! ”

I finally emailed him back explaining that I thought it was funny, and he was perplexed. He straight out asked if we don’t have this phrase in America because they use it all the time. I explained how we use it (my feelings towards it) and he said that they “really say it to anyone, to stop them from doing whatever.”  Interesting, huh?

I just thought this was a good example of how phrases and words can be misconstrued from one culture to another. Have you ever encountered something similar to this? Did it end poorly, or were you laughing it off, taking the opportunity to learn something new?

Personally, now I want to travel to the UK and start telling everyone to hold their horses!


3 thoughts on “Hold Your Horses!

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