Visit the forum if you have a language query!
pinch and a punch for the first of the month
Originating from old England times when people thought that witches existed. People thought that salt would make a witch weak, so the pinch part is pinching of the salt, and the punch part was to banish the witch. The witch would be weak from the salt so the punch was to banish her.
There are many customs and traditions surrounding the use of this phrase, in particular some people hold that it should only be used before midday on the first of the month, though others disagree. A common extension of this phrase is to add "and no returns" to the end of the phrase, which should prohibit the person to whom the phrase is said from responding with either "a kick and a flick for being so quick" or "a flick in the eye for being so sly". If the recipient of the pinching and punching says "white rabbits" before the perpetrator can finish this sentence then they are permitted to administer a punch instead.
Elsewhere on the web