Modern expressions… taken from ‘Your Eyes Fourteen’ by John Carr and Paul Anastasi – A funny Insider’s Guide to colourful Greekisms and idioms.
Are you from the Deaf Islands? (Απ’τα Κουφονησια εισαι; ) (Ap’ta Koufonisia eisai?)
Meaning: are you deaf or something? The Deaf Islands – Koufonisia – are a couple of rocky specks in the north Cyclades, idyllic destinations for those who wish to shun the mass tourism plague. Only one of them is inhabited, and in recent years it has become something of a cult among the cognoscenti, hence the entry into youth speak. The origin of the name is obscure, though “deaf” (koufo) can also mean difficult or barren. There is no evidence that the actual Deaf Islanders are any harder of hearing than anyone else.
Meaning: having an argument Being expressly made to be knocked against one another, billiard balls are a fitting simile for two or more people at loggerheads.
Biting the sheet metal (Δαγκώνω τη λαμαρίνα) (Dhangono ti lamarina)
Meaning: falling in love In a society where the excesses of romantic love have traditionally been regarded with a jaundiced eye, the image is apposite. Being totally besotted with someone is equated to being mentally ill. Sheet metal is perhaps the only material that would stand up to a frenzied gnashing of teeth. The phrase, by the way, is used almost entirely for men as presumably more prone to losing their wits in a romantic situation than women are.