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mere mortal

A human, and therefore capable of mistakes. The phrase emphasizes someone's humanity and fallibility. I have to make my expectations more realistic and realize that she's a mere mortal. Presidents are bound to make mistakes—they're mere mortals, just like the rest of us.
See also: mere, mortal

when (one) was a twinkle in (one's) father's eye

Before one was born. I never knew my grandparents—they died when I was a twinkle in my father's eye.
See also: eye, twinkle

mere trifle

1. An insignificant or unimportant thing or matter. A: "What do you make of the prediction that sales will take a steep drop next month?" B: "A mere trifle—if there is in fact a drop, it should have no bearing on our bottom line for the end-of-year profits." He dismissed the allegation as a mere trifle trying to distract from his campaign efforts.
2. A very small or trifling amount (of something). A: "No thank you, I couldn't eat another bite." B: "Oh, come now, it's just a tiny bit of chocolate—a mere trifle!" A: "I can't believe you would go out and buy a new car without consulting me!" B: "It only cost a mere trifle, so I didn't think you'd mind!"
See also: mere, trifle

mere trifle

Fig. a tiny bit; a small, unimportant matter; a small amount of money. But this isn't expensive! It costs a mere trifle!
See also: mere, trifle
References in periodicals archive ?
Mered holds a Juris Doctorate from Georgetown University and a Bachelor of Arts in Political Science from the University of California, Berkeley.
Sonnir am y modd y bwriodd Mered ymlaen a'r gwaith o "geisio ail-greu bwrlwm y Gymdeithas Gymraeg" yn yr ardal.
"Gallai unrhyw un fod yn falch o fod wedi gwneud shifft Mered yn unrhyw un o'r meysydd hynny [a restrir uchod]," yn ol y golygyddion.
Daeth dau faes i'r amlwg, a anwybyddwyd yn y teyrngedau yn union ar ol colli Mered, meddent, sef addysg oedolion a sefydlu mudiad y papurau bro.
Ond sylw mwyaf dadlennol y golygyddion am Mered yw hwn: "Cyfrol deyrnged at hen ddyn yn nesau at ei gant oed ydi hi.
Pob un a rhywbeth personol i'w ddweud am Mered, ac am ei ddweud yn eu llais eu hunain.