cancel
Showing results for 
Search instead for 
Did you mean: 

Why is the bargepole only 10 foot and not any other size ???

TORPC
Grafter
Posts: 5,163
Registered: 08-12-2013

Why is the bargepole only 10 foot and not any other size ???

As per title
When the saying is
Quote
I would not touch that with a 10 foot bargepole
9 REPLIES
Community Veteran
Posts: 16,820
Thanks: 1,112
Fixes: 13
Registered: 06-11-2007

Re: Why is the bargepole only 10 foot and not any other size ???

because it does not need to be any longer ...... and if it were shorter, it would be useless as a barge pole.
Barge poles are used to help grounded barges by the barge man putting one end into the canal, or on the bank, and pushing in the required direction... If the pole were too long, it would be too heavy and not very manouverable... if it were too short, it would not reach the bottom of the canal, to give the bargeman enough purchase to get the barge off the grounding.
Community Veteran
Posts: 5,314
Thanks: 462
Fixes: 1
Registered: 21-03-2011

Re: Why is the bargepole only 10 foot and not any other size ???

Under EU Regulations all barge poles will be harmonised to three metres.
Now Zen, but a +Net residue.
Moderator
Moderator
Posts: 16,521
Thanks: 1,778
Fixes: 123
Registered: 06-04-2007

Re: Why is the bargepole only 10 foot and not any other size ???

I found this
Quote
Many believe this expression originates from a burial practice in New Orleans. The Spanish developed burial system of present day proceeds by first placing the casket of the patron in an above ground tomb. Exactly 1 year and 1 day after burial, the tomb is opened and the casket removed. The body is next wrapped in a sheet and shoved to the bottom of the tomb using a ten foot pole. The weather of the area caused the remains to decompose quickly and tombs are subsequently reused for many burial. The expression, "I wouldn't touch it with a ten foot pole," is thought to have originated from this burial process.

Forum Moderator and Customer
Courage is resistance to fear, mastery of fear, not absence of fear - Mark Twain
He who feared he would not succeed sat still

Community Veteran
Posts: 767
Registered: 29-10-2008

Re: Why is the bargepole only 10 foot and not any other size ???

The nerdy answer is that it isn't.
The ten-foot pole (of indeterminate use) comes from the US, but some of the earliest examples of the expression make it a forty-foot pole. This side of the pond we wouldn't touch things with a barge pole (of indeterminate length). But even a punt pole is typically sixteen foot, and a barge pole is more likely to be top side of twenty foot - so you'd struggle to find a ten-foot barge pole even if you actually wanted to touch something with one.
Ah, never mind.
Gabe
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,770
Thanks: 33
Fixes: 1
Registered: 08-10-2010

Re: Why is the bargepole only 10 foot and not any other size ???

Just touch it, go on....you know you want to... Cheesy
Make sure you wash your hands afterwards Embarrassed
TORPC
Grafter
Posts: 5,163
Registered: 08-12-2013

Re: Why is the bargepole only 10 foot and not any other size ???

That could be like telling someone not to touch the Red Button that could blow up the world Roll eyes
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,770
Thanks: 33
Fixes: 1
Registered: 08-10-2010

Re: Why is the bargepole only 10 foot and not any other size ???

@Torpc..there was a country pub in Essex that had a naked 'Adonis' statue in the hallway leading to the toilets. This statue had a hinged figleaf over his 'essentials', and a sign saying "do not touch". 
Beneath the figleaf was another sign that read "You have just ring a bell in the bar".  Grin
Many embarrassed women ( and a few men too).  Wink Wink
TORPC
Grafter
Posts: 5,163
Registered: 08-12-2013

Re: Why is the bargepole only 10 foot and not any other size ???

We need something like that to cheer up the pup goers round here Roll eyes
How do you know what it said (Hmm scratches chin) Wink
Community Veteran
Posts: 13,920
Thanks: 514
Fixes: 7
Registered: 01-08-2007

Re: Why is the bargepole only 10 foot and not any other size ???

Quote from: doris
@Torpc..there was a country pub in Essex that had a naked 'Adonis' statue in the hallway leading to the toilets. This statue had a hinged figleaf over his 'essentials', and a sign saying "do not touch".   
Beneath the figleaf was another sign that read "You have just ring a bell in the bar".  Grin
Many embarrassed women ( and a few men too).  Wink Wink

LOL thats brilliant!
I need a new signature... i'm bored of the old one!