Have you ever wondered where idioms come from? Not idiots, they are born. I am talking about idioms.
1. A group of words established by usage as having a meaning not deducible from those of the individual words (e.g., raining cats and dogs).
2. A form of expression natural to a language, person, or group of people: “he had a feeling for phrase and idiom”.
Okay, the word idiom has been defined but how in the world were they coined? My daughter hates it when I use idioms. She complains that she has no idea what I am talking about. Recently, I found a few south western idioms that I am not familiar with and I too have no idea what they are talking about.
Slicker than two snails porking in a bucket of snot. (There was another word used instead of porking but I chose to change it. Where did this saying come from? )
Or how about this one – “If ya don’t know awhere’s you’re a goin’, it’d be a good idea not to use your spurs.” (What does that mean anyway? I would like to think it means be kind to all, but, who really knows?)
Or – “sucking the hind tit”, (What the heck? Is there an order when it comes to tits? Is the hind tit the good one or the bad one? And is this referring to a cows tits? I am so seriously confused)
Don’t squat with your spurs on. (yep, that one I get)
If all his brains were dynamite, there wouldn’t be enough to blow his nose. (Yep, I have met folks like that)
If you ain’t making dust, you’re eating it. ( I got this one)
How about, Don’t be a woman that needs a man, be the woman a man needs. (well I got news for the idiot that coined that phrase. If we women knew how to deal with the crap a ma…. aahh, never mind )
Now, southern idioms make perfect sense to me.
I’m going to knock you into next week. (this, to me, does not need explanation. Is this even an idiom? It does not even feel like an idiom)
Even a spotted dog looks black at night. (this means things will look better in the morning)
The southern language is laced with hidden meanings.
Ima gunna see a man about a dog. (that means you don’t want anyone to know where you are going and you don’t want them to follow you)
She is such a lady. (the old saying is, you should never call a lady a b!*ch but you can always call a b!*ch a lady)
In the south, a minute – is more like a few hours ( that is not too far off from mountain time)
Around the bend – is about 10 miles from the turn in the road ( 40 miles in the mountains)
Directly – is when ever I get around to it (they don’t say directly here in the mountains)
Feelin’ poorly – that is southern code for I am hung over. (folks here on the mountain just tell it like it is.. I got a hang over)
And, down yonder – can be as close as a few feet to as far as the next state. (they don’t say that here either but I sure do get a lot of flack when I use it).
If you can’t run with the big dogs, stay on the porch.
If I were any better, I would not know what to do with myself.
If I were any better, I would still be in the bed.
OMGosh, I can’t stop. How did I get off on this tangent???
I gota stop.
Until next time, practice your idioms not your idiot-ism.