Last modified on 24 January 2014, at 02:36

throw enough mud at the wall, some of it will stick

EnglishEdit

Alternative formsEdit

throw enough mud at the wall and some of it will stick

EtymologyEdit

Possibly based on a technique of building wattle and daub walls by throwing daub (mud mixed with straw) at the wattle, throwing hard enough that some obtained a good key and remained in place, (compare slapdash, a pebbledash effect produced by throwing pebbles at a rendered wall). Sense 2 is probably influenced by throw dirt enough, and some will stick.

ProverbEdit

throw enough mud at the wall, some of it will stick

  1. Try the same thing (or similar things) often enough, and, even if the general standard is poor, sometimes one will be successful.
    • 2001, And still no one is shouting stop. read in The Kingdom archives at [1] on 02 Nov 06,
      Many team managers are of the philosophy that if you throw enough mud at the wall some of it will stick. They believe that team preparation is all about physical fitness. They run the players into the ground and they believe they will be "flying on the day".
    • 2001, Robert McCrum, Let them eat cake, in The Observer 16 Dec 01, read on Guardian Unlimited site at [2] on 02 Nov 06,
      Australian publishing boomed and in the past 10 years the country's literary culture has undergone a mini golden age, capped by Carey's triumph at the 2001 Booker Prize. As one Australian arts administrator said to me many years ago: 'Listen, mate, if you throw enough mud at the wall, some of it will stick.'
    • 2001, Chris Collin, Re: 2-cp speys on The Strathspey Server mailing list archive at [3] on 02 Nov 06,
      I am finding that "if you throw enough mud at the wall, some of it will stick". It doesn't always work of course (especially on the nights when the class is mostly the beginners), but the class seems to thrive on the challange.
    • 2005, Ray Craft (poster on The right scale blog), Fitzhooie and his Burden, read at [4] on 02 Nov 06,
      Prosecutors everywhere have bad habits of overcharging lots of cases, knowing that if the throw enough mud at the wall some of it will stick.
    • 2005, Sean Kelleher, Spike Milligan: His part in our downfall in Business 07 Aug 05, read at [5] on 02 Nov 06,
      As long as there is negligible regulation and enforcement anyone can actually try and do the job...Weak regulation allows the industry to build strategies on full time recruitment. The theory goes: throw enough mud at the wall, some of it will stick.
    • c2005, Everything You've Learned About Marketing Is Wrong, read on LINC Performance website at [6] on 02 Nov 06,
      They have the money to continue to believe in the repetition side of the equation. You throw enough mud at the wall, some of it will stick. But it still isn’t the way to maximize your return.
    • c2005, on talent website read at [7] on 02 Nov 06,
      Dancing dollar bill syndrome, where candidates are picked up and dropped like hot potatoes, and sold into interviews, is common. If you throw enough mud at the wall, some of it will stick, and this is the approach of many recruitment agencies.
    • 2006, "marieclaire66" (poster on Blogit), Just a quick hello!, in Comments on Keep Paddling Until You See The Truth, read at [8] on 02 Nov 06,
      I admire your perseverance. If you throw enough mud at the wall, some of it will stick eventually, paddling would sound more fun than throwing mud, however...anyway all the best.
    • 2006, Ashley Latter, March 2006 -- Tips and ideas to improve your sales, read at [9] on 02 Nov 06,
      There used to be a saying that if you throw enough mud at the wall some of it will stick. Be enthusiastic and you will always sell.
  2. If enough (perhaps false or reckless) accusations are made against a person (or organisation), his reputation will suffer, whether or not this is deserved.
    • 1997, Brent St. Denis, speaking in the Canadian House of Commons, read in Hansard at [10] on 02 Nov 06,
      They go on and on about the CPP increase being a tax. If we throw enough mud at the wall some of it will stick....How can they unfavourably compare that to 9% plus is beyond my comprehension.
    • 2004, "bashos_frog" (poster on MetaFilter community weblog), re: Oh, You Mean Those Records read at [11] on 02 Nov 06,
      The Clinton years proved that if you throw enough mud at the wall, some of it will stick.
    • 2004, Steve Story, The Fall: The Cause sermon at Windy City Community Church on 14 Nov 04, read at [12] on 02 Nov 06,
      It doesn’t matter that the bulk of the charges are distortions of what is real. If you throw enough mud at the wall some of it will stick.
    • 2006, The Goldfish (poster on bloggingmone blog), re: "A Hero in Slippers" or: "Don't Go Outside When It Is Raining Ribbons", read at [13] on 02 Nov 06,
      Perhaps If you stuff both of them into a sack and beat on it, you'll always hit the right one! is a bit like our "If you throw enough mud at the wall, some of it will stick." If you attack something enough, then something is bound to take effect (although the mud and the wall one is generally about a person's reputation).