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Can someone please provide an idiom for a situation when one gains nothing from a certain affair, but still has to pay the price for it.

For example: a person goes to a resturant to have a meal with limited money, and ends up breaking a very expensive glass on his/her way in and now has to pay for it with the only money he had. henceforth, the person did not eat anything and yet had to suffer a loss/ pay a price.

this is being asked as for a translation of a famous hindi/urdu proverb "Khaya piya kuch nahi, glass torda bara aana" which literally can be translated as: Did not ate or drank, yet had to break a glass worth 12 cents. (assuming 12 cents in that period was a lot of money)

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You won't find this in dictionaries, and I suspect it translates literally into other languages:

being over before it began

"It was over before it began."

Minimalism wasn't a real idea - it ended before it started.
Sol LeWitt
Link

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Down the drain, according to Cambridge Dictionary:

If work or money is or goes down the drain, it is spoiled or wasted

Attribution:(Definition of “down the drain” from the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)

  • I think this is the best answer to date so I've upvoted it. As far as I know there is no English proverb which comes close to the Indian one, I'll be really interested if anybody comes up with one. – BoldBen Jul 12 '18 at 6:54
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“Adding insult to injury”

That’s the best I can think of.

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You can use "Rub salt in the wound" or "Slap in the face".

you can also use "Adding insult to injury" as answered below by Zack H.

That's the best I can think of.

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It's a little bit different, but "to be sold a pup" means to buy something that turns out to be worthless. I thought I'd got a great deal on this iPhone, but I was sold a pup. It was just a wood block inside the box.

  • I've heard of pig in a poke and cat in a sack and now this, and apparently all referring to the same thing. – Zebrafish Apr 25 '18 at 8:08
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To do one-self a disservice.

I did myself a real disservice going out to dinner because I broke a very expensive glass on the way in...'.

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