Sunday, January 15, 2012

Southern Appalachian Mountain Sayings


One day, I started thinking about all of the truisms that I have heard my whole life around the area in which I live.  I decided that many of us would have a hard time expressing ourselves if it weren't for these old sayings.  Most of these have at least an element of truth in them.

Greg and I would like to share with you a few of our favorite sayings on this blog post today.

Some of the sayings refer to food:
"Cold as kraut"
"Cool as a cucumber"
"Spilling the beans"

                                                       "Slow as Molasses"
                                       (A variation of this is "slow as Christmas")

                                                     "Like Two Peas in a Pod"

Several refer to objects:
"Saved by the bell"
"Clean as a whistle"
"Good as gold"
"Cute as a button"

                                                        "Pretty as a Picture"
                                        Painting by Artist Fan H. (Mema) Botts

Some involve water:
"I took the plunge."
"He went off the deep end."
"Up the creek without a paddle"

Many are about living creatures:
"Strong as an ox"
"Mad as a wet hen"
"Mean as a stri-ped snake"
"A pig in a poke"
"In hog heaven"
"Getting someone's goat"
"Poor as a church mouse"

                                                   "Crooked as a Dog's Hind Leg"

"Jumpy as a cat in a room full of rockers"
"Cat got your tongue?"
(Jack Hale asks June Tolliver this question in The Trail of the Lonesome Pine outdoor drama in Big Stone Gap, Virginia.  Please see my July 31, 2011 blog post for more details about the drama.)

Some are contradictory:
"Absence makes the heart grow fonder."
"Out of sight, out of mind"

Some are positive:
"She's as honest as the day is long."
"He's the salt of the earth."

Some don't "pull any punches":
"Ugly as a mud fence"
"Fat as a pig"
"Old as the hills"
"My nose is runnin' like a sugar tree."
"Two bricks shy of a load"
(Jed Clampett says this about someone on one of the episodes of the popular old TV series, "The Beverly Hillbillies.")

Some are "head-scratchers".  In other words, they are about as "clear as mud."
"Dead as a doornail"
"Flat as a flitter"

                        I've heard this one many times, especially when I was growing up:
                         "I'll be there, if the Lord is willin' and the creek don't rise."

How well do you know these Southern Appalachian sayings?
1. Stubborn as a _____
2. Skinny as a _____
3. Light as a _____
4. Rough as a _____
5. Scarce as hen's _____
(See answers below.)

There are, I've heard, around 200 Southern Appalachian Mountain sayings.  How many more of these can you think of?

A few days ago, while on a shopping trip, I felt as if I were spending too much time trying to find exactly what I wanted.  Suddenly, it was as if I heard my father say to me, "What's time to a hog?"  That fond remembrance made me smile, because I then realized that I was taking everything way too seriously.  I began to lighten up, and the rest of the day went smoothly. 

What have the people in your life said to you?  If the messages were negative, you can perhaps turn them around and start saying positive things to yourself and others.  Yes, you just might "turn over a new leaf", so that, hopefully, you can be "as happy as a lark."

Mini-Quiz Answers
1. mule
2. rail
3. feather
4. cob
5. teeth

                                                            Featured Photos

Recently, Greg and I met Greg's brother and his family for a wonderful supper at the famous Loveless Cafe in Nashville, Tennessee.

Just click on the link below to see the latest photos Greg and I have on iStock:

Positive thought: Every cloud has a silver lining.
Thanks for visiting!  Until next time (Sunday, January 22), Becky

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