Between You, Me, and the Fence Post

Small towns are notorious for it. It can spread faster than a pat of butter on a hot biscuit. It can be funny or hurtful, friendly or mean, true as true can be or bald-faced lies. It’s repercussions can last for just a hot minute or for years and years and years. What is this…

From Snoot to Tail: Here are all the idioms about pigs!

Pigs are popular in the South, both on our farms and on our plates. The poor vegetarian is hard pressed to find so much as a collard leaf that hasn’t been seasoned with salt pork or a sliver of green tomato that hasn’t been fried in lard. And all manner of swine flesh appears on…

It’s a Mad, Mad South

For Mother’s Day, I wrote about what an ill-tempered child I was. Mama’s mantra to me during my growing-up years was “You’ve got to learn to control your temper.” And it’s mostly worked. Now, whenever I feel a little flare up, I hear Mama’s calm voice and try to go to a happy place. But…

The Turnip Truck

Turnips are dumb. They’re poor too. Bless their silly, impoverished hearts. You’ve heard it said before: I didn’t just fall off the turnip truck. It’s a phrase that’s used to indicate that you’re not naive, you’re not ignorant, you’re not a gullible rube riding in the back of the flatbed with a bunch of sad…

There’s more than one way to skin a cat

I keep a list. Written in pen on paper. Plus, I have a spreadsheet. Once I started collecting the Southern sayings, I couldn’t stop! My little list that started out with a couple of phrases scribbled on a piece of scratch paper has since grown to at least 400 colloquialisms, and I’m trying to figure…

Pretty is as pretty does

Critical. Judgy. Fault-finding. Catty. All of these things are less than attractive parts of my personality. I see it. I know it. That’s why I’m giving it all up for Lent this year. Mama always said “pretty is as pretty does,” and since these are not very pretty traits, I’m kicking them to the curb…at…

If it was a snake…

I am notoriously absent-minded. I leave the lights on. I leave the oven on. I misplace things. I forget things. I’ve even been known to get out of the shower without rinsing the conditioner out of my hair. Once I left the house with only one eyebrow drawn on because I got distracted while I…

Sick as a dog and other Southern sayings for when you feel like poo

A bout with a sinus infection, fever, bronchitis, and all the yuck that goes along with being sick has me thinking about Southern sayings again. I’ve definitely used several over the last few days. And as I sit here under my favorite afghan surrounded by a pile of Kleenexes (both used and not) sipping on…

I haven’t seen you in a month of Sundays!

“Come here and let me hug your neck!” That’s what you’re are apt to hear in the south when you meet someone you haven’t seen in a while. Why the neck, I wonder sometimes. I guess because it’s more intimate than a shoulder hug or a side hug. Friendlier. Warmer. We southerners are social people,…

I don’t give a tinker’s damn

Think with me back to third grade. I’m sitting in the fourth desk in the first row by the blackboard in Mrs. Hurst’s class at Rosa A. Lott Elementary. That’s the year we started learning grammar. Mrs. Hurst taught us about synonyms and antonyms, metaphor and simile, and my favorite, the homonym. As we all…