“Don’t teach your grandmother to suck eggs” and other famous first words

An interesting lesson learned this last week on the portal project. During a discussion on what message of advice people would send via laser to space, Ronnie, a man with a sharp sense of humour, suggested “don’t teach your grandmother to suck eggs”. An off-the-wall suggestion perhaps, but one which soon found relevance within the session itself.

As we began to research famous first words sent via different mediums, I checked that everyone was able to navigate wikipedia ok. Rene, who is one of the oldest in the group, seemed to be reading extremely small text. Keen to help, I offered to show her the two-finger-zoom gesture on the ipad. Her response was to quickly demonstrate to me the said gesture, with a deftness of touch that comes with being a confident ipad user, whilst looking at me as if to say “of course i know that one sonny!”.

Anyway, we found those famous first words, whilst I learnt the true meaning of the phrase “teaching your grandmother to suck eggs”. Just to be sure though, Rene looked it up on wikipedia.

Teaching grandmother to suck eggs is an English-language saying, meaning that a person is giving advice to someone else about a subject that they already know about (and probably more than the first person).


Further reading:

Some famous first words:

  • Telephone –  “come here Watson, I want to see you.”

  • Radio broadcast  – Luke 2:14 –  “Glory to God in the highest on earth peace, goodwill toward men.”

  • Internet “lo.”

  • Telegram – “what hath god wraught.”

  • Television  – “Good evening and welcome to television”

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