Google only returns 6 results. So I'm a bit skeptic.

Example sentence:

I didn't want to eat the food, though it didn't have a pinch to do with the taste.

Is the phrase common/idiomatic? If not, what's a better alternative?

  • 1
    It is not common at all, but a bit of a play on words, compare "a pinch of salt". "a thing to do with" is the normal phrase.
    – TimR
    Commented Mar 16, 2017 at 13:04

1 Answer 1


The formula:

didn't have a X to do with

I hear quite a bit. The X is often "thing" and frequently an intensifier is included:

That didn't have a () thing to do with it.

where () is the intensifier.
To me, this construction is so common, it cannot be referred to as unusual.
Google NGram only allows five words but "damn thing to do with" was well represented.
If you wanted to use the formula:

didn't have a X to do with

I would think using thing for X would be fine, and acceptable in all but the most formal writing.

a thing to do with

is also well represented in Google Ngram

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .