jam tomorrow

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jam tomorrow

An empty, useless promise of something that will never arrive or be fulfilled. (A reference to Lewis Carroll's Through the Looking Glass, in which the White Queen offers Alice "jam to-morrow and jam yesterday—but never jam to-day.") Primarily heard in UK, Australia. The few staff who are still with us are growing tired of promises of jam tomorrow, while having to endure longer hours with less pay.
See also: jam, tomorrow

jam tomorrow

mainly BRITISH
If you say jam tomorrow, you mean that someone often promises that something good is going to happen but that, in reality, it never seems to happen. The government's big plans for education are no more than jam tomorrow. Note: Jam today is used to refer to the idea that people can have something immediately, rather than having to wait. Economists generally assume that most people value jam today more highly than the same quantity of jam tomorrow. Note: This expression is often used to suggest that people are in fact unlikely to receive what they have been promised. Note: This expression comes from the children's story `Through the Looking Glass', by Lewis Carroll, where the Red Queen says, `The rule is jam tomorrow and jam yesterday, but never jam today.' As the main character, Alice, points out, this means that nobody will ever get any jam.
See also: jam, tomorrow

jam tomorrow

a pleasant thing which is often promised but rarely materializes. British
This expression comes from Lewis Carroll's Through the Looking-Glass ( 1871 ): ‘The rule is jam tomorrow and jam yesterday—but never jam today’.
See also: jam, tomorrow

jam toˈmorrow

(British English, informal) good things that are promised for the future but never happen: They refused to settle for a promise of jam tomorrow.This comes from Lewis Carroll’s Through the Looking-Glass (1871) in which the Queen says to Alice ‘The rule is, jam tomorrow and jam yesterday but never jam today.’
See also: jam, tomorrow
References in classic literature ?
The rule is, jam to-morrow and jam yesterday--but never jam to-day.
Nobody I know out there likes James Taylor, the Incredible String Band and Jam To-morrow anyway.
You'll not have heard of the band Jam To-morrow, because it is just two guys, colleague Pete Barrow and myself, strumming and twanging and making up songs which, last week, we played to a few friends, people we felt could be trusted not to be too critical.
I would love to think that Jam To-morrow will become a name with which to conjure in the days to come, but I'm not holding my breath.
The notion of jam to-morrow, by the way, is that of an unfulfilled promise.
The rule is jam to-morrow and jam yesterday - but never jam to-day.