Earlier today, I was outside with Archie. I looked over in the pasture and saw a lovely black heifer enjoying her dinner. It made me think of a phrase my grandma would use when describing a woman who had been mean or lazy. While telling the story, she would say, “Well that old heifer….”.
It made me laugh to think of that phrase. I can hear my grandma saying it just like she is here telling a story. She has been gone for over half my life now. I sure do miss her, but just thinking of a simple phrase she used brought joy to my heart.
A few years ago, my cousin and I were talking, and he mentioned a phrase my granddad would use. My granddad passed away when I was six, so I don’t have many memories of him. I was thrilled to hear one of his phrases. Apparently when he was a little heavy on the gas and spun his tires on gravel, he would say, “Shoot ‘em in the eyeball, boys.”
Since I have learned this little saying, I have thoroughly enjoyed using it! It makes me laugh!
I can only imagine my grandpa saying this, as it isn’t anything I remember hearing. In my head, I see my dad saying it. He was known to “put the petal to the metal” from time to time, so spinning a bit of gravel would be right up his alley.
When my sister and I were younger we enjoyed asking my dad to “tromp it,” which meant hit the gas. We would ask him to tromp it on the final stretch of road before we got home. It made us hoot and holler with delight! That was when gas was still cheap, so no one worried about a quick acceleration back then.
My Aunt E had a saying that sounds like it was straight from Forrest Gump, but it was all Aunt E. She always said, and it is true, “Life is like a roll of toilet paper…it goes quicker at the end!”
Aunt E was always saying funny things. As a great observer of others, she would usually say something like, “Look at that old man….” Of course, she was in her 80s or 90s when she would make this statement, so it would make me laugh! Often, she was the oldest person in the room.
Being a southerner and an east Texan, there are so many cute, clever and memorable sayings that I hear. Of course, any saying that needs to be remembered will be better if it is funny and/or rhymes. Sayings are a wonderful way to teach kiddos important thoughts and philosophies. Think of the golden rule (I am referring to “do unto others as you would have them do unto you.”) But, of course, as a parent, the other golden rule definition (those who have the gold make the rules) applies as well and goes along with the old parent phrase, “As long as you live under my roof, you follow my rules!”
I would add some of my mom and dad’s sayings here, but my mom loved to make-up words or combine two. You might not get the meaning of what I would shared. And my dad used more phrases. Two that come to mind quickly are “straighten-up and clean-up” which is what he always wanted to do with any properties or businesses, and “niiiiiiice,” which is what he wanted the properties to look like after they had been straightened-up and cleaned-up!
My mom and all her sisters used the term “looked like Ned in first grade” to mean someone looked disheveled or not put together, usually when describing themselves. My sister and I, when not happy with our own appearance, will tell the other, “I look like Ned in first grade.” As a family of school teachers, this may have been referring to Ned in the First Reader.
The man we purchased our business from had some great ones! He said, “It is not worth drinking the poison to get the deal done,” meaning if it is going to kill our business, we can’t do the deal. My personal favorite was to do something “for belt and suspenders,” meaning as a back-up or to make sure something doesn’t go wrong.
Do you have any favorite sayings or isms? Please share! I am sure these sorts of sayings are regional and/or what we grew up hearing our family members say. Be sure you pass them on for the next generation to hear. It creates a connection to ancestors long gone that can’t be recreated once the sayings are forgotten.
I thought I would end this blog with a photo of my barn. It is not a saying or ism, but if you read the caption under the photos, you will find a joke.
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