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Cliches starting with Y

yanking your chainIf someone is yanking your chain it means they are intentionally doing or saying something that might be upsetting or annoying to you, but are just joking around or kidding. Usually this means they are doing it on purpose to try to get a reaction out of you, but sometimes they mean it in good fun and humor and did not mean to upset you, which is why they will say they were just yanking your chain.
yellow journalismYellow journalism is the term used for a type of journalism that presents little or no legitimate and well researched news but instead they will use eye-catching and jaw-dropping headlines in order to entice people to purchase the magazine or newspaper so that they will read the stories. When someone uses headlines to draw someone in to a lacking story or news article, it is also known as the yellow press.
you are what you eatYou are what you eat is a catch phrase that insists if you eat unhealthy foods, you will therefore become unhealthy. It is usually said in a way to encourage people to eat more healthy things in order to have a healthy body and a healthy life and is often times related to people who want to lose weight; in this way, the person should be eating light in order to be light.
you bet your bootsYou bet your boots is an expression said by someone who wants to assure you that what you have just said it absolutely true and they can be very certain of it. This is a phrase often said to someone after they have posed a question or concern, and to reassure them, you say they can bet their boots as a way to guarantee this is true.
you can catch more flies with honey than with vinegarYou can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar is a very common idiom which refers to the fact that it is easier to persuade people if you use polite arguments and flattery than if you are overbearing or confrontational. In this idiom, honey is referring to being sweet and kind to someone, while vinegar is referring to being negative, mean, and confrontational.
you can dish it out, but you sure cant take itYou can dish it out, but you sure cant take it is a phrase used for someone who has no problem being judgmental and insulting to other people, but someone turns around and does the same thing to them, they dont take it well at all. This is true of many people that are constantly insulting others or speaking negatively about them, who are not able to take it such as someone talking negatively about them.
you can lead a horse to water, but you cant make him drinkYou can lead a horse to water, but you cant make him drink is an idiom which means that people will only do what they have a mind to, and while you can encourage them by supporting them or leading them towards something, you cant actually force them. The phrase refers to horses and how you can lead them to water such as a creek, but you cant actually force them to drink the water, they must decide that on their own.
you can run, but you cant hideYou can run, but you cant hide is an idiom which means literally you can run but you cannot hide, however is also used figuratively. The phrase originated from Joe Louis, who was an American boxer, and used the phrase often to his opponents. The idiom is often used to someone who runs away from their problems, but they cant actually hide from them even if they seem to escape them temporarily.
you can tell the men from the boys by the price of their toysYou can tell the men from the boys by the price of their toys is a phrase often used in country music songs and other forms of entertainment like movies, television shows and books. What it is referring to is that what people perceive to be a real man will have more expensive things like houses and cars and belongings, because this shows that he works hard for his money and purchases nicer things.
you cant have your cake and eat it tooYou cant have your cake and eat it too is a way to say that you cant have everything, or you cant have things both ways. Having your cake and eating it too is a way of saying you are trying to eat your cake twice which is impossible. You cant have things both ways, you must pick one way or the other which is what this idiom is trying to point out.
you cant judge a book by its coverYou cant judge a book by its cover is a very common phrase which means that you cant judge someone or something by their appearance because it is only skin deep and there is much more to a person or thing than how they look. You will have to look deeper at it and more closely at it before determining your judgment. The same is with a book; the cover of a book is meaningless, it is the contents that matter.
you cant put anything past himYou cant put anything past him is a way to be somewhat bemused by the fact you cant ever be sure what this person will do or say. It is another way of saying you never know with him or her because they are always doing this surprising or shocking or startling to others. This is often said in response to someone asking if this person is capable of doing a specific thing.
you cant squeeze blood out of a turnipYou cant squeeze blood out of a turnip is an idiom used to say that you cant get something from a person that they do not currently have. The most common use of the phrase is when someone is being asked for money or to pay for something, but this person does not have the money therefore cannot pay it. They might tell someone asking for the money they cant squeeze blood from a turnip.
you cant take it with youYou cant take it with you is an idiom which is referring to the fact that you mine as well as enjoy all of your material things while you are alive because you will not be able to take them with you after you die. It is also used as a way to explain there is no reason for saving or collecting things and never using them, because no matter what they are worth, it wont matter once this person passes away.
you cant teach an old dog new tricksWhen someone says that you cant teach an old dog new tricks, it means it is very difficult to make someone change the way they typically do something when they have been doing this thing the same way for a very long time. It is referencing an old dog who has been doing certain tricks all its life, and how it would be nearly impossible to teach it a new way of doing its tricks.
you could knock me over with a featherYou could knock me over with a feather is an older idiom phrase which means that you were extremely surprised or startled by something that has just happened or been heard. It means you are so surprised that you were nearly disoriented with the shock and at that moment in time, probably could have been knocked over very easily (not literally), with something as light as a feather.
you could put your eye outYou could put your eye out is a warning expression to someone who is doing something which can potentially be dangerous and literally cause them to poke their eye out or cause them to be blind in some way. Most often, this phrase is referring to playing with some kind of gun which could go off at any moment and hit them in the eye. This phrase is commonly referenced in the movie A Christmas Story.
you drive me crazyYou drive me crazy is an idiom used when someone is annoying or irritating them. There are many different idioms which mean virtually the same thing, such as driving you crazy, driving you nuts, driving you insane or even driving you up a wall. Each idiom phrase means the same thing; that something this person is doing or saying, whether intentional or not, is bothering you in some way.
you drive me up a wallYou drive me up a wall is a common expression used by someone who is being annoyed or irritated by someone else. When you say someone is driving you up the wall, it means someone is driving you crazy or insane because they are constantly doing or saying something intentionally that is bothering you. It is simply another way to say you drive me crazy or you make me insane.
you got your just dessertsYou got your just desserts is an idiom which is referring to someone getting exactly what they deserved. This may be used in reference to something good or bad, such as a reward for something good, or punishment for something bad. It is most often used for getting what you deserved such as paying the consequences, but the origin of the phrase refers to dessert as being an award for good behavior.
you gotta put your foot downYou gotta put your foot down is a phrase which shows the importance of being the boss, standing up for yourself and no longer letting others (usually children or inferiors) boss you around and get away with things. This is often used in reference to a parent setting rules and sticking to them as well as punishing her children for disobeying those rules, rather than letting the children slide.
you have to break a few eggs to make an omeletYou have to break a few eggs to make an omelet is an idiom which refers to the importance of sometimes having to destroy something in order to achieve something. This is an inevitable and necessary thing in many occasions, depending on the situation in question. By referring to cracking eggs, it means to sometimes have to break or destroy an idea or a thing to achieve something worth more.
you have to separate the chaff from the wheatYou have to separate the chaff from the wheat is another way of saying you must separate what is useful or valuable from something that is worthless. In farming and horticulture, the wheat is something considered very valuable, while the chaff is not, and is similar to weeds or something useless. When used figuratively, it means in any situation you should separate the valuable from the worthless.
you have to stand for something or youll fall for anythingYou have to stand for something or youll fall for anything is said to be something which was first spoken by Rosa Parks as a way to show why it is important for everyone to stand up for what they believe in, as she heroically did. What the phrase means is that you should always stand up for something, of something you truly believe in, or else you may be a victim of falling for something you dont believe in at all.
you hit the nail on the headYou hit the nail on the head is a phrase said when someone or said something like a new idea or a resolution to a problem and they have said exactly the right thing or to do something in the most effective and efficient way. In the phrase, it refers to hitting a nail right on the head, because when you do this, it is the most effective and efficient way to nail in something, rather than hitting it on the side.
you lie like a rugIf someone says you lie like a rug, it means that you are lying to the point where it becomes completely obvious that you are lying. This phrase is a pun because by saying you lie like a rug it is referring to a rug being placed on the ground, but the meaning of the idiom is the other meaning of lie in that you are telling something that is not truthful or deceitful.
you made your bed, now your gonna have to lie in itYou made your bed, now your gonna have to lie in it is another way of saying that if you make the decision to do something and it turns out badly, you must then accept the consequences of your actions. When it is your responsibility, because something was done or said by you intentionally, it is then your responsibility to accept the potential consequences should it not go well.
you make a better door than a windowYou make a better door than a window is a phrase which refers to someone who is standing directly in front of you and in your way. This is somewhat of a more polite way to ask someone to move aside whether because you are trying to see something, or because you need to get past them. It refers to a door as in that you cant see through a door, but you would be able to see through them if they were a window.
you must be out of your mindYou must be out of your mind is an expressive idiom phrase often said to someone who has done or said something that is showing they are not thinking clearly. This is usually said to someone in response to something they have said which does not seem very logical, and downright impossible so you tell them they must be out of their mind.
you only live onceYou only live once is a common idiom used to explain that you should not worry about small, meaningless things that cause you undue stress because life is short and you are only going to live once. It is also a way to encourage people to take chances and really enjoy everything about life and not make big mistakes to ruin things because they wont get another chance at life.
you wash my back, Ill wash yoursYou wash my back, Ill wash yours is a common phrase which relates to the importance of returning a favor when someone does a favor for you. It is often said to someone who has asked you for something and in return you will tell them you wash my back, Ill wash yours as a way to say you will do something for them if in turn they will do something for you.
you win some, you lose someYou win some, you lose some is another way to say that you cant always succeed and you must cope with the fact that although you may win some, you will also inevitably lose some. It is often said to someone who seems discouraged about losing something whether it is a promotion to someone else, losing a game or competition of some kind, or perhaps more figuratively where something bad happened to them.
youll know it when you see itYoull know it when you see it is a common idiom which refers to something that will be shown or proven once you see it, another way of seeing you may not believe it until it happen in front of you. It is commonly said in response to someone not understanding what youre trying to explain but once they see it for themselves, it will begin to make a lot of sense.
young and restlessYoung and restless is a phrase which refers to someone who is very young and when trying to find their path in life, are constantly moving from place to lace and moving from one group of friends to another group of friends. It can be referred to young people being restless with everyone and everything before they find their way. The cliche comes from the title of a popular soap opera, called The Young and the Restless.
your ass is grassYour ass is grass is an expression which threatens someone of their potential doom or demise, such as something bad happening to them. This phrase can be used seriously in a threat of extreme violence, or more casually in that someone might be getting into trouble. It originates from the fact that someone murdered outdoors would have their body decompose and become fertilizer for the grass.
your place or mineYour place or mine is a common expression which is asked of someone to decide which dwelling or whose home they will continue their romantic rendezvous at. It is very commonly associated with a sudden or spontaneous sexual encounter with someone, but can also be used in a variety of other situations where they decide which place to do something at.
your times upIf someone says your times up, what they mean to say is that the time you were allotted to do something or have something done, has now run out. It is literally to say your time is up, meaning you were given a certain time on the clock, or a countdown timer which has now run down to zero meaning you have no more time to get this thing done.
youre all wetYoure all wet is not a literal idiom, but in fact it used to say you are mistaken, wrong, or going down the wrong track. Being all wet is not literal in the sense you are wet from water or rain, but instead are just going down the wrong track or the ideas and opinions you have are incorrect, whether intentional or you are simply mistaken about something
youre dead meatTo say youre dead meat is a way of saying you are in a lot of trouble. Dead meat has been used as a cliche for being in trouble with someone for several years and continues to be directly related to doing something wrong of which you have been caught doing, and are now in trouble and must pay the consequences for this bad thing you did.
youre off your rockerIf someone says youre off your rocker they mean to say that you are not being rational at all or acting very crazy, insane or off-the-wall. To say off your rocker basically means you are having thoughts, feelings, opinions, or talking about something that is really not rational at all and makes no sense to the general observer because of how you are acting or talking or based on what youre saying.