...what he sees is at least eight parts chicken...

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may531028

Senior Member
Chinese
The phrase comes from the following sentence:
"The Gospel is bad news before it is good news. It is the news that man is a sinner... that he is evil in the imagination of his heart, that when he looks in the mirror all in a lather what he sees is at least eight parts chicken, phony, slob. That is the tragedy..."

I wonder what does "all in a lather" mean? ... implying the soap one applies for shaving?

And what does "eight parts chicken" mean?
 
  • Joelline

    Senior Member
    American English
    The phrase comes from the following sentence:
    "The Gospel is bad news before it is good news. It is the news that man is a sinner... that he is evil in the imagination of his heart, that when he looks in the mirror all in a lather what he sees is at least eight parts chicken, phony, slob. That is the tragedy..."

    I wonder what does "all in a lather" mean? ... implying the soap one applies for shaving?

    And what does "eight parts chicken" mean?
    When a horse is sweating profusely, it produces a "lather," so the phrase "in a lather" is sometimes used to describe people who are agitated, very worried, very upset. Sometimes we also say that people are "in a sweat."

    "Eight parts chicken" means that the person who is looking in the mirror sees himself as being composed of 8 parts coward. If you call someone a "chicken" in AE, you are calling that person a coward. If a person is 8 parts chicken, it means that 80% of his personality is made up of cowardly behavior.
     
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