My French speaking friends and colleagues often tell me that the English language is confusing. Take, for instance, these two common sayings we use in our everyday lives: “It’s a dog’s life” and “Work like a dog.”
Originally, “It’s a dog’s life” referred to a “miserably unhappy existence, as in He’s been leading a dog’s life since his wife left him. This expression was first recorded in a 16th-century manuscript and alludes to the miserable subservient existence of dogs during this era. By the 1660s there was a proverb: “It’s a dog’s life, hunger and ease.” (Dictionary.com)
Nowadays, “It’s a dogs life” refers to our uber spoiled pooches who are able to laze around and sleep all day, having no worries or issues more pressing than dinner time. I like to experience the dog’s life during fishing season – in my boat!
Now, “Work like a dog,” on the other hand, means exactly the opposite. It means working to your maximum ability for an extended length of time. I have had to do this from time to time… at work and at home! I have pictures to prove it! This is my buddy Phil and I putting a cement pad in for our garden shed. That man is a machine. I slept for two days after we were done! Note I am sweating and he is NOT!
HOW TO OBSERVE
You can celebrate by either working very hard! Or… if you’d rather, you can simply share just how hard you work on Social Media using #NationalWorkLikeADogDay to keep folks informed. You could also search that hashtag and see how hard others are working!