Today’s photos:  Robin Jones Gunn with Babe . . . and an axolotl.  🙂  

Kay reminded me of these, so I dug up this post from 2005 and decided to rerun it.  

You may have seen these, but they’re too good not to repeat. Actual analogies and metaphors from high school essays . . . and I tell you, there are days when I’ve composed some that could compete with these! Enjoy!

1. Her face was a perfect oval, like a circle that had its two sides gently compressed by a Thigh Master.

2. His thoughts tumbled in his head, making and breaking alliances like underpants in a dryer without Cling Free.

3. He spoke with the wisdom that can only come from experience, like a guy who went blind because he looked at a solar eclipse without one of those boxes with a pinhole in it and now goes around the country speaking at high schools about the dangers of looking at a solar eclipse without one of those boxes with a pinhole in it.

4. She grew on him like she was a colony of E. coli and he was room-temperature Canadian beef.

5. She had a deep, throaty, genuine laugh, like that sound a dog makes just before it throws up.

6. Her vocabulary was as bad as, like, whatever.

7. He was as tall as a six-foot-three-inch tree.

8. The revelation that his marriage of 30 years had disintegrated because of his wife’s infidelity came as a rude shock, like a surcharge at a formerly surcharge-free ATM.

9. The little boat gently drifted across the pond exactly the way a bowling ball wouldn’t.

10. McBride fell 12 stories, hitting the pavement like a Hefty bag filled with vegetable soup.

11. From the attic came an unearthly howl. The whole scene had an eerie, surreal quality, like when you’re on vacation in another city and Jeopardy comes on at 7:00 p.m. instead of 7:30.

12. Her hair glistened in the rain like a nose hair after a sneeze.

13. The hailstones leaped from the pavement, just like maggots when you fry them in hot grease.

14. Long separated by cruel fate, the star-crossed lovers raced across the grassy field toward each other like two freight trains, one having left Cleveland at 6:36 p.m. traveling at 55 mph, the other from Topeka at 4:19 p.m. at a speed of 35 mph.

15. They lived in a typical suburban neighborhood with picket fences that resembled Nancy Kerrigan’s teeth.

16. John and Mary had never met. They were like two hummingbirds who had also never met.

17. He fell for her like his heart was a mob informant and she was the East River.

18. Even in his last years, Grandpappy had a mind like a steel trap only one that had been left out so long, it had rusted shut.

19. Shots rang out, as shots are known to do.

20. The plan was simple, like my brother-in-law Phil. But unlike Phil, this plan just might work.

21. The young fighter had a hungry look, the kind you get from not eating for a while.

22. He was as lame as a duck. Not the metaphorical lame duck, either, but a real duck that was actually lame. Maybe from stepping on a land mine or something.

23. The ballerina rose gracefully en pointe and extended one slender leg behind her, like a dog at a fire hydrant.

24. It was an American tradition, like fathers chasing kids around with power tools.

25. He was deeply in love. When she spoke, he thought he heard bells, as if she were a garbage truck backing up.

Now . . . want to try writing a so-awful-it’s-good metaphor of your own?  



  1. C.J. Darlington

    5. She had a deep, throaty, genuine laugh, like the sound a dog makes just before it throws up.

    Nothing like that sound!

  2. Carrie

    I particularly like the graceful ballerina who looks like a dog about to pee on a fire hydrant!

  3. Kay Day

    Number 20, I actually like. I told my friend from Georgia that she should write a Redneck Romance. I think this line would fit in there perfectly!

  4. Kay Day

    Her eyes were a greenish-brown color, like the stuff they get out of the sewage line when they clean it.

    (I used to tell my friend, when we were 15, that she had sewer green eyes. Ain’t I sweet?)

    His kiss was warm, moist, and soft, like two earthworms crawling on her mouth.

    (Ok, I’m wondering if I can do this without being gross?!)

    She was thin, but not too thin. She was in between like a woman who wears medium sized clothes.

  5. Lisa

    I’m laughing so hard I almost snorted my coffee! My family is wondering if I’m nuts. Thanks for re-posting this. It’s so good to laugh!

  6. Smilingsal

    That’s a nice picture of your sweet dog.

  7. Momstheword

    I didn’t know the origin of that list, just that Bert Christiansen had it on his site. Made me laugh all over again just to read yours.

  8. Jackie Colburn

    Long week for me. We hosted missionaries for about five days. And I’m a make-do mom for a 17-yr-old college feshman for two months. The market is a mess so my day job in the financial world is spinning counter clockwise. I read number one on the list. Then number two. I was rolling on the floor by number three! Thanks so much for helping me start my weekend with laughter!


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