blogging, life, writing

Stay Frosty – Meanings and Uses of Interesting Phrases

I have come across these phrases and I thought they were worth looking into. The origins of these phrases are not clear. Some of them are more prevalent in the military. Others have been used in books and movies.

The usage of certain saying and phrases is good to know, if you are a writer. Colorful sayings and phrases can make your writing more interesting and give your characters a more realistic flavor.

Doing research about phrases used by a certain social group, can be beneficial, if you are developing a character.

As a blogger, it is good to learn about a variety of things, including language and slang. Here are some phrases that I have come across lately and I thought they were interesting.

Stay Frosty –

stay alert and ready . stay on your toes, be vigilant 

This is a phrase used in the military when the troops are in a harm’s way situation.

“Hey! I know we’re all in strung out shape but stay frosty and alert. We can’t afford to let one of those bastards in here.” –Corporal Hicks (Michael Biehn), in Aliens (1986)

Never pet a burning dog

don’t try to help something or someone when it’s too late. If the situation is already on fire and explosive, don’t run into it and get yourself burned by it. 

Also, offering a minor, compassionate gesture to a dramatic dangerous situation is not going to help. It has already gone too far and is beyond your control.

Look out for Number One

– to do what you think is in your own best interest without caring about other people

Put Your Shoulder to the Wheel

give it your all. make your best effort to get the job done


to take the working parts from a broken piece of equipment, and use them to repair something else


– when someone in the military has been given an assignment that is supposed to be voluntary but it clearly known to be mandatory , then they have been “Voluntold.”

On a personal note, this was also the name of my brother in law’s rock band, that he had when he was in the military. They thought it was a clever name and it looked great on the tee shirts they had made.

You are not Required to Set Yourself on Fire to Keep Other Warm

– in your efforts to help others and be compassionate, you should not cause yourself harm and injury in order to show kindness. You have to draw boundaries that protect yourself from harm.

It is good to offer yourself to others but only to the point that you are not in danger in a physical, psychological, spiritual or any other way that would cause you damage.

I looked all over online for the origin of this phrase ans could not find anyone that knew the actual origin. There are many places where this phrase has been adopted into web sites and blogs.