local expressions

tibs(5/6 OH)February 14, 2011

the other day as we are driving down the street dh made the comment that the pavement was really "hooving" up. By which he meant becaue of all the freeze/thaw cycles the asphalt pavement was raised up in many spots, making for a bumby ride. It hadn't cracked, just bulged. I wondered, hooved up , hmmm wander what that exactly means and I cannot find a definition spelled hoove, huve, houve. So I wonder if it is local for Heaved up? Anyone else ever use this word?

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tibs(5/6 OH)

Never mind, I found it "Hoove is a very old past participle of the verb to heave" Should of known, it is an Appalachian expression. The older I get the more coloquial I get.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2011 at 3:10PM
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Glad you found your definition those things can lead a person to distraction. This may not be a local word rather a country vs city. I was made fun of by using the term crick, to describe a small stream of water. There is the river the creek and then the crick..Those city folk thought I was making it up, silly city people :)

    Bookmark   February 14, 2011 at 6:09PM
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Lol, I've had several , ok, many encounters with the English language. (As you all may have noticed) The first one was when I was talking with an American friend over the phone and I asked what she was doing? She said she was "laying around the house". I took it literally, and wondered how on earth she could stretch that far and why would someone want to do that. I figured that it was some sort of American saying and did not ask her about it at the time.I figured it out later.

I have a question about the meaning of "South Land" these days. Our local news people call Los Angeles, South Land, there seems to be a TV show about South Land, and I've seen people from the south call their region, South Land. I'm up the creak or crick about this one.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2011 at 8:27PM
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If you live in NJ or Eastern Pa,you never say you are going to the ocean,you say "down the shore."

    Bookmark   February 14, 2011 at 8:51PM
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petaloid(SoCal 10a/24)

West Gardener, I live in the "southland," and it encompasses all of southern California, including Los Angeles.

Kind of a vague, general term for our area. Could mean anything south of Alaska, couldn't it?

    Bookmark   February 14, 2011 at 9:14PM
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There is the Southland and the South, two different creatures. The Southland is the sunbelt of the lower US stretching from California to Georgia. It is the area of the US that receives the most sun throughout the year. It's not political in nature. The South is the Old South, what would consist of the Old Confederate States of America, and the border states of said political entity.

    Bookmark   February 14, 2011 at 11:04PM
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sweet_betsy No AL Z7

Our ears used to perk up when Grandmother used the word "hippins" to refer to the baby's diaper. Since we are good at using slang, I always thought it was just that. Imagine
my surprise when I ran across that word in an English novel.
Grandmother knew what she was talking about. I guess that word came over with her grandfather from Ireland. Are any of you familiar with the term?

    Bookmark   February 15, 2011 at 7:19AM
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No, learn a new word nearly daily. I use old saws my parents used since my earliest memory. It wasn't until I was much older I thought on them and it hit me they were idioms her grandparent's used and both of them were children during the Civil War. Then, they made more sense.

One of them she used when referring to things moving rapidly was "like Grant went through Richmond". My g'grandmother was from Richmond, Virginia. I can imagine what it looked like when Grant went through it.

Another old phrase was something so messy it looked like a flicker's nest. Well, now that I am a birdwatcher, I know what a flicker's nest looks like. The floor of their cavity is filled with wood chips and sawdust.

A less delicate expression from these hills is that something is so grimy it looks like a coalie's backside, only the three letter word starting with A is used, instead of backside.

Or if you cook up a huge meal you've made enough for Coxey's Army. I got a history lesson looking that one up. They were a group men who marched to the nation's capitol to bring attention to fiscal crises of 1893 and a demand that the governement intervene with job creation. Grover Cleveland refused and Coxey was arrested for trespassing on public property when they set up camp.

We hear a lot about the depression of the 1930s but it wasn't until I started researching Coxey had I ever heard of the crises in the 1890s. Failed banks, double digit unemployment as busisnesses failed, foreclosures. Uhm........everything old is new again.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2011 at 10:04AM
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lindac(Iowa Z 5/4)

My great grandmother, who lived with us, remembers seeing Lincoln's funeral train....
There are several old family expressions like "She came in here like Grant took Richmond"...or he "kind but rough as a cob" I am supposing from the days when cobs were found in the out house....Or even.."she looks like she just came off the boat"...my family all were in the US for generations and generations and while one branch was poor as church mice and uneducated, they still had pride in being native born Americans.
And my mother would say about a silly hat or a hat that had been out grown.."you look like Happy Hooligan"....who I learned was a comic strip character who wore a funny hat.
Other expressions I can't identify were things like "She gave me a sweater and it was big enough to fit Joe McGorry".
Who was Joe McGorry? And another was... tuck your shirt in and tie your shoes, don't want you running around looking like a Mascer"...or Massgar...never saw it spelled. I think that was a very messy and dirty family who my mother knew as a child....because I can find no other refrence.
I am sure there are others....
Good thread!
Linda c

    Bookmark   February 15, 2011 at 10:36AM
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oh gosh...Happy Hooligan. My mother used to say that and I haven't thought of it for probably well over 30 years.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2011 at 11:22AM
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My Grandpa said when they were kids they used to eat "Poke and Grits" for dinner. That meant poke your feet under the table and grit your teeth.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2011 at 11:54AM
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Krista, we had an old neighbor who always waited for springtime so he could eat poke and grits, poke beeing the new shoots and leaves of pokeweed. Once they get a couple of weeks old they get poisonous. Tastes somewhat like spinach.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2011 at 12:36PM
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When I wouldn't eat whatever it was I thought I didn't like--mainly vegetables--my Grandmother would tell me, "Those poor, starving children in Armenia would be glad to have that food, so you'd better eat"! Of course, I had no idea where Armenia was, but would have been happy to send those children my vegetables. If I was bold/sassy enough to voice those sentiments, I'd get sent away from the table without finishing what I did want to eat. :>(

    Bookmark   February 15, 2011 at 6:25PM
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This is changing the flavor of the post a bit, but it shows how one can be absolutely clueless about language. I worked for years in the "hood". Drugs, gangs etc. One day I was standing in a drug infested part of town and a fellow came up to me and asked if I had any "work". I said I did not know but the handyman was up in one of the apartments, and go ask him. I asked the handyman if the fellow had shown up and told him that the fellow had asked about "work". The handyman explained that "work" was a word for drugs in that neighborhood. Holy cow, I could have gotten both of us in trouble without knowing it.

    Bookmark   February 15, 2011 at 7:32PM
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gourd_friends(z5/6 IL)

I had a short visit with an elderly lady that had a comment about everyone, and everything. She said her neighbor was "so tight, she'd skin a flea for the lard".
There were more, but I've forgotten them by now.


    Bookmark   February 15, 2011 at 11:58PM
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I was an avid fan of the recently-wrapped "Real Housewives of Beverly Hills." (Hey, don't judge. It's been a wicked winter here in the Midwest and it was too cold to go outside. lol)

One of the episodes included a confrontational dinner scene with arguing and accusations. The next morning two of the wives were heading to another engagement. Lisa, who is originally from London, reflected on the previous night's events and how exhausted it had left her: "I feel like I've been shagged through a hedge backwards."

AFTER I had ROFL'd for a good long time, I decided this bit of custom-made Englishism was my new phrase for "Holy cow, that was intense." Voila: instant colloqualism! :o)


    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 9:01AM
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You do know that 'shagged' means something entirely different in British English than US English, don't you?

Because, while you can describe someone as "looking like they were dragged through a hedge backwards" I definitely wouldn't use that new alternative in polite company! Entirely different image . . . .

I spend my life tripping over expressions that make everyone around me laugh, and I have to say "oh, don't you say that here?" - again.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 9:44AM
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Yeah, I know what it means, Sara. Lisa was so exhausted at that point she confused "shagged" with "dragged." That's what made it so funny. lol I have to say that, in the context of that miserable dinner from the previous night, Lisa's gaffe was far more accurate. lol

I used to hang out with someone who was from Northern Ireland. Every once in a while she or I would use a term that would leave the other clueless. Trolley, jumper, pavement, lift, braces...we got a lot of conversational mileage out of the respective British vs. English definitions.

Oh yeah, my friend was always quick to point out she wasn't strictly British but that's a whole other thread. lol


    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 10:08AM
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...oops. Guess I should've specified British vs. AMERICAN definitions.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 5:23PM
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There is a saying in the Scandinavian countries (Norway, Sweden and Denmark) and that is: "koser meg". We know what it means.
One of the things it means is that we make plans for the long winters by spending time with family and friends,getting together, bring the favorite foods, play music, play games etc. We've learned how to get together during the hard times.
Someone coming into this culture may not understand what the words:"Koser meg" means and disparage the term.

    Bookmark   February 16, 2011 at 7:51PM
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