1. Czuć miętę do kogoś – to feel mint to someone
Meaning: to be enchanted by someone
Etymology: Mint smells nice and intensive – so it attracts our attention. In addition, mint is recommended to be drunk to increase the libido. However, some people associate the proverbial mint with “passion” (“namiętność”).
2. Być nie w sosie – to be not in the sauce
Meaning: to be in a bad mood, to feel blue
Etymology: The phrase is related to the old beliefs, when people had been thinking that four human fluids (blood, bile, phlegm and black bile) were responsible for our mood. Depending on which of them prevailed, we could be in a good or a bad “sauce”.
3. Rzucać grochem o ścianę – to throw peas against the wall
Meaning: to speak or explain something unsuccessfully
Etymology: This one is easy, because nothing would happen, if you throw peas onto a wall. In order to break it, you should rather try something harder.
4. Co ma piernik do wiatraka – What does gingerbread have to do with a windmill?
Meaning: one is not related to another
Etymology: Those two things don’t have a single common feature, that is why we say so if one situation is completely different from another. But, is it actually right? The gingerbread flour is produced in a mill though…
5. Uciekać gdzie pieprz rośnie – to run where the pepper grows
Meaning: to run very far (to an unknown location)
Etymology: Pepper has always been imported from distant countries. That is why we keep saying we run to the place where it grows, so that no one could find us.
6. Obiecać gruszki na wierzbie – to promise pears on a willow tree
Meaning: to promise impossible things
Etymology: There are two negations brought together. Pears simply don’t grow on willow trees, so that’s what we say so if someone promises us unbelievable things.
7. Wywieść w maliny – to lead to raspberries
Meaning: to cheat someone
Etymology: To explain the origin of this idiom we should return to the old days, when we all did not have the GPS. “Wieść” means „to lead” or “to show the way”, but if someone has led you to raspberries (definitely by telling the wrong way) – he just cheated you.