Does anyone know that expression? I haven't heard it for a long time but I think it's an accurate assessment of the time remaining in this calendar year - just two days left. But I looked it up:
shank |SHaNGk|noun1 (often shanks) a person's leg, esp. the part from the knee to the ankle: the old man's thin, bony shanks showed through his trousers.• the lower part of an animal's foreleg.• this part of an animal's leg as a cut of meat.2 the shaft or stem of a tool or implement, in particular:• a long narrow part of a tool connecting the handle to the operational end.• the cylindrical part of a bit by which it is held in a drill.• the long stem of a key, spoon, anchor, etc.• the straight part of a nail or fishhook.3 a part or appendage by which something is attached to something else, esp. a wire loop attached to the back of a button.• the band of a ring rather than the setting or gemstone.4 the narrow middle of the sole of a shoe.
It doesn't sound as if it's time-related, does it? But speech, well, English speech, is all metaphor, isn't it? We speak in images and colour. We see red when we're annoyed; we are blue when we're depressed, black when the mood is really dark; we're yellow when we are cowardly, and go white with fear. But we spring back when we recover. We unwind at night; we wind up our business affairs; we are wound up when we're excited. I don't have to say any more. You get the picture.
This is not what I was going to say at all. I was going to get maudlin about the end of this year that was. I guess there's time enough for that. Don't hold your breath.