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Hi,

I've come across the following sentence:

He stated that the Stadium should be “the jewel in the crown and not the cuckoo in the nest”.

I know that:

- "One Flew Over The Cuckoo's" is a title of a film;
- the cuckoo do not build their nests, and lay their eggs in other birds' nests.

Yet, I am not sure about the meaning of the sentence.

Does "The stadium should not be the cuckoo in the nest" mean it should not be an undesirable guest? Or something that causes nuisance? Or a parasite?

Thank you in advance!

(PS: before asking here, I searched in many idioms lists but didn't find it)
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Hello Tanit,

In Britain, the cuckoo lays its egg in the nest of another, smaller bird – often a hedge sparrow, or a meadow pipit. When the cuckoo egg hatches, the baby cuckoo ejects the eggs of the host from the nest, one by one. (It puts the hollow of its back against each egg, and pushes it out backwards.)

The host pair then feed the baby cuckoo. (Since the latter is much bigger than the parents' usual offspring, this can be a very exhausting process.)

So in your example, the stadium might resemble the baby cuckoo in two ways:

a) it would distract attention from other worthwhile projects (= ejecting the eggs).

b) it would consume disproportionate resources (= exhausting the host parents).

MrP
Comments  
Thank you, Mr P! Logic and clear explanation!