I am wondering whether there is any routine, English proverb which is used to imply there is always someone better; so you have to prevent from being too proud of yourself.

I came across the metaphorical phraes a long time ago, however I had not enquire about it from native speakers and that's why I'm not quite confident whether it is an idiomatic and natural English saying which is understood and used by the majority of natives or not. It is:

  • I saw a saw that saw a saw.


  • I saw (past tense of the simple verb see) a saw (an instrument) that saw (verb) a saw (an instrument.)

First, please let me know whether it is a common English proverb. Second, please tell me if there is any better proverb/idiom/expression to imply that specially in AmE.

  • 2
    I think you mean "there is always someone better" in the title and the first sentence. The "saw" sentance has a very different meaning, for my UK senses. It is a fun sentence designed to confuse, or to show the many meanings of "saw", or to challenge people to work out the many meanings.
    – AdrianHHH
    Dec 14, 2020 at 21:39
  • 2
    I can't see any connection between the "saw" sentence and the idea of a proverb about "there is always (someone) better".
    – James K
    Dec 14, 2020 at 22:00
  • Uh, thank you @AdrianHHH; that was a typo caused by copying and pasting. I fixed it.
    – A-friend
    Dec 15, 2020 at 1:33
  • Perhaps my own sentence "there is always someone better" is the clearest and the most tangible way of implying that. Do you confirm @James K?
    – A-friend
    Dec 15, 2020 at 1:37

1 Answer 1


We often say someone is a "big fish in a small pond" if they think they are better than everyone, but in fact they have only encountered a small number of people to compare themselves with, and they might not seem so great if compared to a wider selection of others.

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