Are these idioms? if yes why cant i find it on google?


yesterday i went for an interview, there a person asked me two English words, i didn't know the meanings, the words were "any gray shaded area of life" and any "wine glasses in life", i did not know the meaning of both words, then he told me that gray shaded area means bad experience of life and wine glass means good experience of life, after coming back home i googled the both words but could not find these meanings, i am still confused what are they, are they idioms? if yes why cant google answer me? pleaseeeeeeeee help.

asked Jul 04 '13 at 10:26 tehmi New member

2 answers


I am familiar with the gray area, but I have never heard wine glasses of life.

Things that are clearly right or wrong, or have two clearly opposite sides, are said to be 'black and white'. When the colors black and white are mixed, you get gray. This is the basis for gray areas, where a choice of right or wrong is not so clear.

link answered Jul 04 '13 at 12:56 Lewis Neidhardt Grammarly Fellow

thanks, i asked so many people, everyone said the same as you :)

tehmiJul 05 '13 at 05:13

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I am in agreement with Lewis.  Any "grey area" is the place between black and white - somewhere between right & wrong, on & off, up & down, yes & no, or any other set off opposite choices. 


I have never heard or read any references to the "grey-shaded area of life" or "wine glasses in life." These might be metaphors that the interviewer picked up from a school he attended or a group he belonged to.  Just as a group of friends can have an inside joke, groups often repeat metaphors that one member used.  It becomes a commonly understood metaphor.  Sometimes, that can grow beyond the group. 


Since there is already a common usage for grey area, that does not mean only the negative side, the interviewer's usage and explanation will likely not catch on to the general public.  One guess is that he heard someone use these phrases, he liked the phrases, and he thinks they are widely understood.  It might have been someone on TV, such as a life coach who hopes the phrases will be used and he can take credit for coining the phrase.  "Wine glasses in life" actually sounds like something that Kathy Lee Gifford might say on the Today show - she uses references to wine quite often.  Another possibility is that the interviewer knows the phrases are only used locally or within a certain group, and he is weeding out people who don't come from that group. Since you can't find any reference to either phrase in a Google search (neither could I), it is more likely the latter.  If someone is using the phrase publicly, it will show up on a Google search. 

link answered Jul 04 '13 at 14:33 Patty T Grammarly Fellow

thanks :)

tehmiJul 05 '13 at 05:14

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