The figurative language of Adam Gopnik…

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I like to share interesting pieces of figurative language I encounter in my reading. I write today about a metaphor from Adam Gopnik…

I’ve tried to steer clear of commenting on the results of the recent US election. It seemed as though there were too many people who knew more than I and who were funnier than I. As well, many million miles of video tape have already been expended and gallons of ink have surely been spilled on the topic.

Still, when I read the very funny pieceTrump and Obama: A Night to Remember,” written by Adam Gopnik in the Sept. 12/15 New Yorker, and recently highlighted by the publication, I knew I had to comment. Here was my favourite graf from the Gopnik story:

Once, and only once, in 2011, have I attended the annual White House Correspondents’ Association dinner in Washington, D.C., on the grounds, as I explained then, that Voltaire is said to have cited when he declined a second invitation to an orgy: once a philosopher, twice a pervert. Luckily for the philosopher in me, it turned out to be an auspicious night. Not only, as we did not know then, was President Obama in the midst of the operation that would lead shortly to Osama bin Laden’s killing; it was also the night when, despite that preoccupation, the President took apart Donald Trump, plastic piece by orange part, and then refused to put him back together again.

First, the line attributed to Voltaire is hilarious. Second, I really like the way Gopnik takes the cliche “piece by piece” and jazzes it up by adding a couple of adjectives — plastic and orange — and by removing the repetition and using, instead, another word, “part,” that also begins with a P. I also enjoy the lightly veiled reference to Humpty Dumpty with the phrase, “refused to put him back together again.”

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