The Things People Say

Old 08-04-2016, 06:59 AM
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Default The Things People Say

What vocabulary do you use that is specific to your region? I'd be very interested to hear from members in different countries. One of my girlfriends was from Manchester, England. She used to call a peanut butter sandwich a "peanut butter buddy." A burlap bag where I'm from is a "tow sack." Here is a very interesting link:

This morning I was reading a thread on this board that had been started by one of our Australian members. She had posted some photos of projects that she had been working on and another member from St. Louis replied that she had been "busy as a beaver." She told her that this was an American expression. It made me think about a conversation I had with my husband just last night. We were watching a television show and I made a comment that one of the characters was "dumb as a hammer." DH asked me, "What does that even mean? I've never heard that before." Then I thought about it and realized that I don't even know what that means. I am originally from the south and it was common to hear that expression growing up. Turns out, the expression is more typically "dumb as a bag of hammers," or "dumb as a bag of rocks." Someone I know used to say, "If their brains were dynamite, they wouldn't have enough to blow their nose."

We've all heard things like, "He's not playing with a full deck," or "Their lights are on, but nobody's home," or "He's not the sharpest tool in the shed." How about, "Good lord willing, and the creek don't rise?" My ex-husband was from Colorado and he used to say that. In Maine, something is not just good, ; it is "wicked" good. In South Carolina, at the end of a visit, when company would leave and we would see them to the door, like clockwork, my relatives would always say, "Why don't ya'll stay awhile," but they didn't really mean it. If bad weather was on the horizon, we always said that it was "coming up a storm." If you agree with someone down south, you might say, "you ain't just whistling dixie." And yes, ain't is a word. If someone is full of themselves, we say that they are "too big for their britches." Have you ever been "too broke to even pay attention?" When I lived in Germany, I worked in a tailor shop ran by Germans. They taught me to say, "Men are all dumb (insert something not so nice here to replace the word dumb), one and all of them. What they don't have in their head they have in their little toe." They told me this was a typical German expression. They may have been pulling my leg... Which brings me to another expression--pulling my leg; where does that come from and what does it mean? Most of us have heard, "Bless your heart," or the passive-aggressive version, "bless your heart, tramp." Instead of saying, "I declare," in my family, we said, "I swanny." If we canned a lot of beans, we said that we "put up a mess of beans." What are some of your favorite expressions? Do you think they regional?
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Old 08-04-2016, 07:07 AM
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I'm from the South, and my 98 year old Father uses this expression, "I hope her do the dishes". We all say,"ya'll come back,now".
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Old 08-04-2016, 08:06 AM
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In Texas we have
"y'all" for you all...and we use it a lot!
"ice box" for refrigerator
"dolly" for handtruck
"feeder road" for the ground-level lanes that run parallel to the highway
"fixing to" meaning I am about to, e.g. "I'm fixing to run to the fabric store,"
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Old 08-04-2016, 08:14 AM
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I am a transplant to the south, lived here for 40 plus years. I like that "coke" means any kind of carbonated soft drink. As in "what kind of coke do you want?" Of course "Y'all, bless her heart, mama'n'me. Weather will "fair off" when the sun comes out. I'm sure there are more but right now can't think of them.
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Old 08-04-2016, 08:43 AM
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A shopping cart iin Minnesota is a buggy in Florida.
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Old 08-04-2016, 08:49 AM
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*** Her/His elevator doesn't go all the way to the top.
*** Dumb as a box of rocks. - Lacking in Brain matter.
*** Y'all. - tater (potatoes) & maters (tomatoes) - Roastin' ears (fresh corn on the cob)
*** We have grocery buggies.
*** Corn Shucks (not husks)

Last edited by jbj137; 08-04-2016 at 08:51 AM.
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Old 08-04-2016, 09:05 AM
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Well, in my part of Canada we of course ALWAYS, say "eh?"

Soda is "pop" and potato chips are just "chips", but so are french fries, for the most part.

"How's it goin?" is the same as "How are you?" (Also known as "How's it going', eh?")


PS..Stitchnripper...."Well bless her heart" around here means about exactly the opposite. Usually reserved for someone who has done you dirt.
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Old 08-04-2016, 09:15 AM
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I've lived in several different regions (mid-Atlantic, western PA, the midwest, and I have sisters in the south). So I've heard quite a few.

-"she was rode hard and put away wet" (someone who has lived a hard life)
- breakfast, lunch, and supper are the 3 main meals (whereas on the East Coast it's breakfast, lunch, and dinner)
- Near Pittsburgh, you might "red up a room" (straighten it up, tidy, pick it up--elsewhere)
-in Kansas I heard "the wind was blowin' 90 ta nothin'" (really hard)
- in the south some food is "so good it makes you wanna slap your pappy" (or your mama)
-native Baltimoreans will say , when they're going to the beach, "I'm goin' downy oh-shun, hon" (everyone is a "hon" to people who were "born and raised" here near the city)
-my 27 year old DD sometimes mixes up her idioms; one time, instead of saying, "It's not my first rodeo" she said "This isn't my first merry-go-round." Cracked us up. When I chuckled, she said, "What?" I said it's rodeo and she laughed, "Oh, I knew it had something to do with horses!" (We call those slip-ups "Sarah-isms" in our house.)

-I grew up calling all athletic shoes "tennis shoes" but my kids identify them: basketball shoes, running shoes, etc.
Other people call them sneakers. My dad calls them loafers.

-We eat pancakes. I've heard johnnycakes, flapjacks, short stack...

We drink soda. And it's specific. Coke is Coke. Mountain Dew is Mountain Dew. Pepsi is Pepsi (and second rate at that).

We grill, grill out, or cook out (for all outdoor barbecue cooking).
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Old 08-04-2016, 09:31 AM
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I live in So CA and I can't think of one slang that is used commonly in the area. Of course, young kids always have their own dialect.
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Old 08-04-2016, 09:55 AM
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Originally Posted by Pegasus View Post
In Texas we have
"y'all" for you all...and we use it a lot!
"ice box" for refrigerator
"dolly" for handtruck
"feeder road" for the ground-level lanes that run parallel to the highway
"fixing to" meaning I am about to, e.g. "I'm fixing to run to the fabric store,"
Don't forget "big ole" as in "that's a big ole tree" and my all time favorite saying "finer than frog's hair" lol

And, of course, we can't forget "lower than a snake belly" and "isn't that precious?" which actually means just the opposite.

Last edited by cashs_mom; 08-04-2016 at 09:59 AM.
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