Although she has known me, literally, all her life, apparently I still surprise and amuse my daughter with my speech patterns. Oh, not the cursing, that she just takes in stride. But some of the figures of speech I come out with are simply too much for her to deal with, I guess. Some of this is caused by the fact that I’m old and she’s well…not old, and so many things I say are dated and unknown to her. A few of the phrases I spit out, the non-curse word ones that is, no doubt come from being raised by Appalachian born and bred parents. So I can see why my language choices might be slightly confusing to my daughter who has had a completely different childhood.
It does make for interesting conversation at times. Especially during our road trips, when I shout something particularly wrathful, I feel, at the driver in front of me, yet the effect on the smart-ass sitting in the passenger seat is one of great amusement. Or we’ll be having a perfectly civil conversation and without thinking, I reveal yet another unheard-of gem and the disbelieving eye-rolling begins. Because, you see, it’s not that she thinks I’ve lost my mind, but rather, that I’m an idiot who doesn’t have a keen grasp of my native language. And really, who can blame her? If I didn’t know better, I’d think some of these phrases are made up as well.
Then of course, out comes the long-winded explanation to prove that no, I haven’t suddenly gone daft, only to be told “that makes absolutely no sense” with that lovely tone of disdain only a teenager can properly produce, to which I respond – with utmost maturity mind you – yeah, well, you don’t know everything and then proceed to stick out my tongue.
Oh yes, good times.
While writing this, I could not for the life of me recall all of the phrases I’ve used that have tickled my daughter to no end. However, I did start a list with the few I could remember and will update it on occasion as more spring to mind or mouth.
Piss or get off the pot.
You don’t have the sense God gave a stump.
It’s like trying to herd cats.
I’ve got no dog in this fight.
Lie like a dog – also worded as – lie like a rug.
That dog won’t hunt.
Lord willing and the creek don’t rise.
Dressing up mutton and calling it lamb.
Stop acting ugly.
If I had my druthers.
Rode hard and put up wet.
Hair of the dog.
I used to laugh when my Mom used these when I was a teen, but now I open my mouth and my mother’s phrases come tumbling out. My hubby uses the one…”if I had my druthers” but his is…”if I had my others”. Loved this post, thank you.
LOL, I USE some of these expressions to, and English isn’t even my native language 😏 to funny…
so we’re the accompanying vid that goes with this??? how do we know for sure???
I see nothing wrong with your language and phraseology. My oldest is always giving me hell whenever I use the word “didja”. she always looks at me like I have corn growing out of my ears when I ask her something like…
“Didja get that raise?”
nice post. I see you upgraded to your own site.
Admittedly, I’ve only only heard one of those and that’s because you can’t put a horse away when it’s wet, after riding it. LOLOLOL Never heard of any of the others.
I was not raised in Appalachia, but know and have used all the phrases you listed, so maybe it’s both an age and a broader regional thing?
I use similar phrases but have heard all but two of these and I live in Ohio! The herding cats, piss or get off the pot as well as all of thecdog references may have come from my Dad whose family were in Cincinnati but a lot of Kentucky comes through the phrasing there! Funny expressions but for some reason my kids have their own style which they got from who knows where?! 🙂
I’ve never heard and I will use from now on, ‘it’s like trying to herd cats’.
Mutton dressed as lamb we use a lot in the UK (Spain no idea) and hair of the dog, every Brit knows that! And Aussie! Poor dogs, they ain’t got a good rep in the South!
“Good Lord willing and the creek don’t rise” was used in the final verse of The Box Tops’ 1968 hit I MET HER IN CHURCH.
Typical southern adage, actually.