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Kävi kuin mustalaisen hevoselle.

-- Traditional Finnish proverb

Derived from an old joke.

"Woe is me!", lamented the Gypsy. "I was teaching my horse not to eat, but just when it had learned the trick, it up and dies on me!"

The proverb is usually used in contexts when something has failed miserably, the implication being that the failure was due to to somebody's stupidity, usually referring to management but occasionally the speaker himself. More directly, if a kid at dinner refuses to eat his yummy brussels sprouts, his mom will remind him of the fate of the Gypsy's horse.

(Yes, you would be quite correct in labeling this racist. However, the proverb is still in wide use, and good little anthropologist that I am, I'm merely recording without making value judgements -- so think of some other reason to downvote this, willya?)

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