beer and skittles, (life is) not all

(redirected from not all beer and skittles)

(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 ?
Life's not all beer and skittles, and who said at forty it begins?
The very next article by Victoria Lambert (It's not all beer and skittles) described some of the ethical issues surrounding the production and consumption of beer.
IT'S not all beer and skittles being the best-looking bloke in the village.
The job was not all beer and skittles and 'Evening, all'.
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