Wednesday, May 09, 2007

I’ve got nothing but a Trip Down Memory Lane……

"A lick and a promise" was just one of the many old phrases that our mothers, grandmothers, and others used that they probably heard from the generations before them. With the passing of time, many old phrases become obsolete or even disappear. This is unfortunate because some of them are very appropriate and humorous.

Here is a list that our parents and grandparents used that we don't hear much anymore. Perhaps you have some memorable old phrases of your own that you could add to the list:

• A Bone to Pick (someone who wants to discuss a disagreement)
• An Axe to Grind (Someone who has a hidden motive. This phrase is said to have originated from Benjamin Franklin who told a story about a devious man who asked how a grinding wheel worked. He ended up walking away with his axe sharpened free of charge)
• A bad apple spoils the whole barrel (one corrupt person can cause all the others to go bad if you don't remove the bad one)
• At sea (lost or not understanding something)
• Bad Egg (Someone who was not a good person)
• Barking at a knot (meaning that your efforts were as useless as a dog barking at a knot.)
• Barking up the wrong tree (same as above)
• Bee in your bonnet (To have an idea that won't let loose)
• Been through the mill (had a rough time of it)
• Between hay and grass (Not a child or an adult)
• Blinky (Between sweet and sour as in milk)
• Calaboose (a jail)
• Cattywampus (Something that sits crooked such as a piece of furniture sitting at an angle)
• Dicker (To barter or trade)
• Feather In Your Cap (to accomplish a goal. This came from years ago in wartime when warriors might receive a feather they would put in their cap for defeating an enemy)
• Hold your horses (Be patient!)
• Hoosegowl ( a jail)
• I reckon (I suppose)
• Jawing (Talking or arguing)
• Kit and caboodle (The whole thing)
• Madder than an old wet hen (really angry)
• Needs taken down a notch or two (like notches in a belt usually a young person who thinks too highly of himself and needs a lesson)
• No Spring Chicken (Not young anymore)
• Persnickety (overly particular or snobbish)
• Pert-near (short for pretty near)
• Pretty is as pretty does (your actions are more important than your looks)
• Red up (clean as the house)
• Scalawag (a rascal or unprincipled person)
• Scarce as hen's teeth (something difficult to obtain)
• Skedaddle (Get out of here quickly)
• Sparking (courting)
• Straight From the Horse's Mouth (privileged information from the one concerned)
• Stringing around, gallivanting around, or piddling (Not doing anything of value)
• Sunday go to meetin' dress (The best dress you had)
• We wash up real fine (is another goodie)
• Tie the Knot (to get married)
• Too many irons in the fire (to be involved in too many things)
• Tuckered out (tired and all worn out)
• Under the weather (not feeling well this term came from going below deck on ships due to sea sickness thus you go below or under the weather)
• Wearing your "best bib and tucker" (Being all dressed up)
• You ain't the only duck in the pond (It's not all about you)

Well, if you hold your horses, I reckon I'll get this whole kit and caboodle done and sent off to you. Please don't be too persnickety and get a bee in your bonnet because I've been pretty tuckered out and at sea lately because I'm no spring chicken. I haven't been just stringin' around and I know I'm not the only duck in the pond, but I do have too many irons in the fire. I might just be barking at a knot, but I have tried to give this article more than just a lick and a promise.


t2ed said...

Tomfoolery: Anything my friends and I liked to do.

Noise (usually G.D. Noise): Any music my friends and I liked.

Shenanigans: See tomfoolery but with the addition of some possible slight illegality.

We'll see: In response to any request, Mom's attempt to delay a tantrum instead of just giving the actual answer of no.

HotForSimon said...

I think you pretty much covered everything! LOL

Wicked H said...

t2ed: I swear we were separated at birth!

HFS: Well unfortunately I am old enough to have heard them all, repeatedly...LOL

tommy said...

How about "sticking to you ribs"

My grandma used to always say that

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Crazy Lady said...

Very clever!

The CEO said...

Looks like you used to live with my family too.

Ryan Mc said...

This is an interesting list!