Please help me to understand it

If you’re going to ham it up, go the whole hog. — G. I. Gurdjieff

Is the 'ham' a meat? What is a 'hog' here?


The author uses two idioms:

To ham it up - deliberately exaggerate one's emotions or movements, or to overact or act badly.

To go the whole hog - to do something as entirely or completely as possible; to reserve or hold back nothing.

The combination of these two idioms is humorous because both relate to pigs.

  • 2
    With a pun, since ham comes from hogs. – Tᴚoɯɐuo Jan 11 at 15:06
  • 2
    And there is a variant form, "go whole hog" without the article, with the same meaning. – Tᴚoɯɐuo Jan 11 at 15:08

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