Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Who's Your Momma?


I listened talked with my mother on the phone the other day. I must admit that most of the time I have heard her stories over and over. I think she forgets which of the seven children she has told them to and how often. She can talk so long that sometimes I have had to put the phone down and go tend to some emergency like a grandchild trying to scale the refrigerator and when I get back she is still talking about the same thing. But to her credit raising seven children might just make you a wee bit confused. For example, when I was very small I thought my name was BarbaraLorettaVondaJohnDavidJayKristin. This is what she yelled when she was trying to get the attention of one of us.

When I was growing up she had a million old sayings that would pepper her talk. I didn't even blink an eye when she said things like "that's enough to make a preacher cuss on Sunday". It was just part of her language. In fact I never even thought of the meaning of most of them until my children would giggle about all of "Grandma Mae's funny sayings". However, for the most part I never repeated much of what she said and I still don't. It could be that many of them were pretty er, um explicit. She was raised in a very rough environment where every other word was a swear word. So for the sake of your ears I won't tell you some of them with raunchy meanings even though they make me laugh. Besides if I wrote some of those things down this blog would become x-rated. But following are some that I remember.

~I need that like I need a paper head.
~Do you want me to knock you into the middle of next week?
~I was so surprised that I crapped a ring around myself and fell back in it.
~Do you want me to choke you with a dirty sock? (I always wondered why not a clean one)
~I haven't seen you in a coon's age
~She couldn't sing her way out of a paper bag if her life depended on it
~This fog is so thick you could cut it with a knife
~He's meaner than quarreling cats in a gunny sack
~Deader than a door nail
~Dumber than a post
~She's so skinny if she turned sideways and she'd disappear
~You can't get blood from a turnip
~She looks rougher than 10 miles of bad road
~Gone to hell in a hand basket
~Don't pee down my back and tell me it's raining
~That's enough to drive a wooden man nuts
~So dumb he couldn't pour piss out of a boot with the instructions written on the heel
~That's enough to gag a maggot on a gut wagon
~Put that in your pipe and smoke it
~The apple doesn't fall far from the tree
~You can't make a silk purse out of a sows ear
~If you wallow with the pigs, don't expect to come up smelling like a rose
~Slow as a month of Sundays
~What in the sam hill are you doing
~Dead as a doornail
~A stitch in time saves nine
~Quit your lallygagging
~I'm all stove up
~Johnny on the spot
~You little scallywag
~I really got his/her goat
~He's two bricks short of a load
~She's paddling with one oar in the water
~I haven't done diddley squat
~It don't 'mount to a hill-a-beans
~Won't give you the time of day
~Knee high to a grasshopper
~Just a fart in a whirlwind
~This is the best thing since sliced bread
~I ran around here like a chicken with it's head cut off
~Madder than a wet hen

So what old time sayings have you been exposed to?

24 comments:

Tammy of Lurksville said...

I don't know where she is from, but I was born and raised in Kentucky and all of these are very familiar to me ;D

TSannie said...

My 86 year old father who I NEVER heard swear (well, until he took up golf at the age of 67, but that doesn't count, because golf would make Mother Theresa swear) in all my childhood used to say:
"I'm so mad I could spit cotton!" when he was really upset/angry. When I was very small, I used to watch his mouth intently for the cotton balls to come out. Never did. Good memories!

trisha too said...

Those are great! I'm adding the dirty sock one to my list of vague threats of bodily harm . . .

Dead as a doornail is very Charles Dickens . . .

noble pig said...

I think you hit them all! Those are some great ones!

Linda Reeder said...

I hate to admit it, but I've heard most of these myself, and even know what many of them mean!
I think my dad used many of these, but not my mother.

Twisted Fencepost said...

Well, I think I've heard all of those and still use some of them.

How about:
Mad enough to spit nails.
or
Dumber than a bent sled track.
or
Dumber than a brick bat.
?????? Some of them just don't make sense.

oregontribal1 said...

My Grammy "exposed" me to a few raunchy ones too. But on a cleaner note: Slicker than snot on a doorknob. 'Bout as useful as tits on a boar. "Holy Crap girl, don't tell your dad about that fiasco", was her polite way of telling me I'd messed up royally. Oh and my gramps' favorite:" He's dumber than a pile of pig poop, and I ain't got no use for pig poop!!!" Hope those will make you smile? Teresa

Jill said...

I love all of these, and I LOVE listening to Grandma talk! She's got such a colorful vocabulary! I think some of my favorites are the "pooping" in a circle and falling back in it, "I ate so much, I couldn't shut my tail down", and the one about a feather, a hiney, and being tickled (I suppose that could be a touch too gross to post? :o)!) The forehead and eyebrows and chin on Grandma Mae? I see them every day on that little guy of mine! Pretty cool :)

Carolynn said...

These were funny. I recognize a lot of them. My Dad was the one who spouted words of wisdom, such as these. In addition to 90% of these, he'd also refer to something that was a mess, as looking "like a whore's nest." To this day, I have no idea what a whore's nest is, but I'm pretty sure it's not good.

He's also say someone was "dumb as a sack of hammers." Again,...huh?

He'd also say the things that Oregontribal1 listed...never was a fan of the "snot on a doorknob" reference. Ick!

rhymeswithplague said...

There's one in there I think you didn't hear right: "A stitch in time *saves* nine" is what I have always heard. It makes sense that way.

CeeCee said...

I've heard most of your mom's sayings. The only one I'll add, is just a twist on everyone else's "dumber" ones.
Dumber than a bag of hammers. Why are hammers even considered in this sentence? It sounds good, but makes no sense at all.
I may have to Google it. ;)

Carrie and Troy Keiser said...

There are only a few on that list that I didn't hear my parents say! So funny! Thanks for sharing your mom's sayings! They made me smile! :)

Rose said...

There are a few I haven't heard, but have heard most of them. Always wondered what a door nail was though...

Putz said...

let's say we will, but don't

Mental P Mama said...

All those plus:

Busier than a one-armed paper-hanger.

Loved this;)

Junebug said...

I've heard most of those too. I can relate to your phone calls with your mom. My mom can carry on without a word of encouragement on the phone. I have to put her on speaker phone if I'm going to get anything done. She's like the energizer bunny. Here's one that I've heard: "Colder than a witch's tit." There is a meaning to that from a navy ship but I couldn't remember all of it.

The W.O.W. factor said...

Wow! You had to dig deep for that list! (Unless you still are blessed to hear those words...)
So many ring true in my ears, but I'd forgotten most!
The "two bricks short a load" is still common in our house today..
..hmmm wonder why....

tipper said...

Well you've made me smile this morning! Loved all the sayings-most all of them are common here in Appalachia too.

Julie Andrea said...

Let's see, I just woke up, but here's what I can remember:

-Don't get your knickers in a twist (don't get excited, calm down)
-Cold enough to freeze the balls off a brass monkey
-Their family tree .. doesn't branch
-I'm as full as a tick! (from a farmer friend)
-All cats are grey in the dark
-You aren't looking on the mantle when you are poking in the fire

Julie Andrea
sundayschild1966(at)yahoo(dot)com

Jeannelle said...

Oh, what a good idea for a post! So many sayings from the older generation are part of our memories. Its good to remember them!

That "haven't seen 'em in a coon's age" was one I heard often. And, "I wouldn't know him (or her) from a load of coal".

"That's the way the ball bounces."

"Some days you can't lay up a dime."

"Stop your cryin' or I'll give you something to cry about."

There's many more stored somewhere in my memory bank......I'll be thinking about this all day now! Great post, Vonda!

Moritz Help Desk said...

If wishes were horses then beggars could ride. (When I asked for something impossible)
Whistln women and cacklin hens are not fit for God nor men. (When I whistled)
She/He looks like she/he was rode hard and put up wet. (Comment on someone's appearance)
She looks like a taxi with both back doors open (wide hips)
Use your head for something besides a hat rack. All I can think of at this time. Your post was great. Thanks for the trip down memory lane.

DesertHen said...

I'm laughing myself silly.......Those sayings are all very familiar to me. I have even said some of them myself.

annie d said...

Dumber than a box of hair. Odd, but pretty self explanatory. Some of these made me laugh out loud.

Granny Sue said...

A lot of these are familiar to me too, but since my mother was English she had a few that were different, like
"no better than she should be"
"bless my buttons"
"he's a little light on his heels"
"what can you expect of a grass skirt" (referring to girls who went into the woods with boys and came back with grass stains on the back of their skirts)

Your mother sounds like quite a character. I loved reading these. Thanks!