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Is ‘basket of cow flaps‘ an idiom? This is a passage from Elizabeth Strout’s book, a story taking place in present day Maine:
Olive can understand why Chris has never bothered having many friends. He is like her that way, can’t stand the blah-blah-blah. And they’d just as soon blah-blah-blah about you when your back is turned. “Never trust folks,” Olive’s mother told her years ago, after someone left a basket of cow flaps by their front door.
Could it be about some local custom ? because there seems nothing else in the story that might explain it.
I have never heard this expression but I am surprised that I did not immediately connect it with “cow flop” which is manure. I googled “what is a cow flap” and found only one site that said it is the same as “cow flop.” So I am not sure that they are the same but I think they probably are.
If they are the same, this would not be a custom but a nasty joke. “Cow flop” would not be an idiom but a euphemism for manure. Basket would probably be literal.