seven-armed paperhanger


New Member
Romania, Romanian
Could anyone please help me understand this phrase: "I felt like a seven-armed paperhanger, going from one phome to another, [talking to the stock exchange, the Chicago futures exchange, and the various Fed presidents.]"
Yes, it's from Alan Greenspan's recent book of memoirs, and I'm a bit confused about his use of the term "paperhanger' in this context.
I know here are 2 main meanings to the word: wallpaper manual worker, and someone who uses bad checks.
Which one do you think Greenspan's alluding to here?
Thank you!
  • Gordonedi

    Senior Member
    UK (Scotland) English
    Do you mean "phone" and not "phome" ?

    If so, I interpret this as being very busy doing various things at once.
    Wallpaper-hanging is a very manual task, and it is often necessary to use both hands at once - wishing for a third !


    New Member
    Romania, Romanian
    Yes, phone, not phome - sorry, sorry!
    Thank you, Gordon, that was helpful.
    (In my language, we would say "I felt like an octopus", with virtually the same meaning.)