Until moments ago, I was unaware of the term, “to throw a wobbly.”
Looking for a more colorful way to declare, “I am annoyed,” I stumbled upon the expression at a website devoted entirely to idioms and their etymology. (Fellow word geeks unite! Our time has arrived!)
Sure, I guess I could have simply said, “I am annoyed.” There’s nothing wrong with that. It’s clear, simple, to the point. However, fashioning myself as craftsperson of the language arts, I forever seek out-of-the-ordinary turns of a phrase to spice up how I communicate, the intent being to make it more vivid and engaging. Not being much of a cook, I presume it’s in the same manner as a chef would feel if confined to white salt and black pepper. Sure, they’ll do the job; but where’s the fun?
Should you — like me — have been in the dark about “throwing a wobbly;” let me explain. Turns out, it’s not a good substitution for “annoyed.” Rather, it appears to be of British or Australian derivation, coined from the adjective “wobbled” which meant someone was “off center.” So, “throwing a wobbly” can best be described as a petulant rant; somewhat akin to “throwing a hissy fit.” It is however not as severe as “going ballistic.” Now, don’t we feel smart?
Alas, it’s still not the correct usage for what I want so it’s back to being annoyed; or maybe cranky. I don’t know; can one be both? Sure, why not?
Hmmm, I seem to have digressed. The bigger issue is, “What prompted said (poorly described) uncomfortable emotional state?” I shall explain.