beer and skittles


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(all) beer and skittles

Fun and enjoyable. "Skittles" is a British game that is similar to bowling. You've been working all weekend, so just come out with us for a little while—it'll be beer and skittles, I promise. Just because we get good perks doesn't mean this job is all beer and skittles.
See also: and, beer, skittle

(all) beer and skittles

all fun and pleasure; easy and pleasant. (Skittles is the game of ninepins, a game similar to bowling. Fixed phrase.) For Sam, college was beer and skittles. He wasted a lot of time and money.
See also: and, beer, skittle

beer and skittles

amusement. British
This phrase comes from the proverb life isn't all beer and skittles . The game of skittles is used as a prime example of a form of light-hearted entertainment.
See also: and, beer, skittle

beer and skittles

(...ˈskɪdlæz)
n. something very easy to do; an easy time of it. Did you think life was all beer and skittles?
See also: and, beer, skittle

beer and skittles, (life is) not all

Life is not all fun and games. Skittles, a kind of bowling game played by throwing wooden disks at pins, was very popular in Great Britain, where drinking beer remains a widespread form of recreation. Pairing the two came about quite naturally in the nineteenth century. Dickens’s Sam Weller assures Mr. Pickwick, who is about to enter a debtor’s prison, that the prisoners enjoy themselves there: “It’s a regular holiday to them—all porter and skittles” (Pickwick Papers). But Dickens’s contemporary Thomas Hughes observed that “Life isn’t all beer and skittles” (Tom Brown’s School Days). Essentially a British cliché, it spread to America but is heard less often today. Legendary adman David Ogilvy had it in Confessions of an Advertising Man (1963): “Managing an advertising agency is not all beer and skittles.”
See also: all, and, beer, not
References in periodicals archive ?
IT'S not all beer and skittles being the best-looking bloke in the village.
Chairman of the Parents and Friends of St Joseph's School Margaret Callaghan organised a sponsored bounce and a beer and skittles event.
But Ozzie's days of beer and skittles in Tameside, near Manchester, could soon be over.
Privately, Soviet social scientists conceded that all was not beer and skittles within the bloc.
This cultural snippet brings us rather convolutedly into Father's Day and the news that English Heritage has come up with the ideal free gift this weekend at Belsay Hall in Northumberland - a beer and skittles event that involves a lot of fun, Wylam Brewery and a slice of culture in the beautiful grounds of one of our regional jewels.
I know being a widow isn't all beer and skittles but if all that's left for Davina now is to drift aimlessly through life surrounded by nutters like these two, I don't know how she'll find the strength not to chuck herself into the Thames.