A Hellacious Belle’s Guide to the New South: Talkin’ the Talk

~My theme for this month’s Nano Poblano challenge is Motion~


It’s the oddest thing.

For people who, as a rule, talk pretty slow and sometimes move even slower,  Southerners seem to pack a lot of action into their vernacular.

You see, I don’t just up and go to the store, I’m fixin’ to go to the store – by adding the helpful phrase “to fix,” I imply that I somehow prepare myself mentally, physically and spiritually to journey to Publix verses you Yanks just getting in your car and driving over.  Way more descriptive action = same result.

As Southerners, we may drawl our responses, but action bristles through our patois: dogs hunt, cousins kiss, possums are treed, biscuits are buttered. There are frequent calls to action: “Smile before your face freezes and you’re stuck like that forever,” “Do be a love and fetch my pocketbook,” “Eat that chicken! Folk are starvin’ clear around the world,” “Reach that there glass of wine and bring it to your momma.”

And then there are the idioms; truly enough literary motion to exhaust any listener:

“He’s so confused he don’t know whether to wind his butt or scratch his watch.”

“That room’s so small you couldn’t cuss a cat without getting hair in your teeth.”

“I’m feelin’ fine as frog’s hair, split three ways and sandpapered down the middle.”

“Run with the big dogs or stay on the porch.”

“Hon, you are barkin’ up the wrong tree.”

“He’s busier than a cat covering poop on a marble floor.”

“That skeeter’s so big he could stand flat-footed and screw a cow.”

A Southerner could be all relaxed and chillin’ on the porch swing, sipping some sweet tea or a coldbeer, but their conversation might as well be benchin’ a hundred in the gym.

“Afterwhile, we’ll mosey over.”

“Scamper off, littl’un.”

“Stop diddlepoopin’ around.”

“She is havin a hissy.”

“He was sweatin’ like a whore in church.”

While you surely  hear about all this activity, you actually very rarely see it.

Which is, I suppose, one of the things us folks down South do best, and that’s talkin’ the talk.

Just giving you some ponderin’ for your Monday.

I’m headin’ out now, seeing as I got more goin’ on than a one-eyed cat watchin’ two mouse holes, but you be sure and have yourself a nice day.





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