Meaning: this is better than menial work
Rewrite 1: It beats pitting olives
Rewrite 2: It beats cleaning sewers
Rewrite 3: It beats stuffing prunes
Rewrite 4: It’s better than dusting road mines
Comment: The use has gotten away from the sense of hot, painful work picking cotton could be to the more mundane, unenviable effort. I’ve extended it even further.
Check out the searchable alphabetical list of my cliché rewrites with the archive list.
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