Saturday, August 9, 2008

Similes make me smile!

Grammar has never been my strong suit. I use ain't way too much and say don't when I should be saying doesn't. Therefore, it won't come as much of a surprise to many folks that the part of the grammar book that I read first was the chapter about similes. A simile is a phrase that is used to describe something instead of adjectives. Instead of saying that some guy has a white, pasty face, I'd say that ol' Casper is whiter'n a nun's rear end. Might not be very couth, but that's never been a burden for me either.

Now, I didn't just wake up one summer day and say "Wow, its hotter'n two rats screwin' in a wool sock!" No, my dad had a saying for just about everything. That's what they're called in our family, sayings. Dad's were sometimes normal and predictable, ("Its hotter'n hell!), so I tried to branch out a little with new sayings. After all, dad had a 30 year head start on me and everyone knew his "sayings".

There are two of dad's sayings that I continue to use that have always confounded Jenny and the kids. The first is "Now you're stepping in tall cotton!" He came up with this because everyone, and I mean everyone, else were saying "Now you're cooking with gas" and "Now you're cooking on the front burner!" It means that, somehow, you're managing to do something the correct way. The other saying is "Show 'em how the hog ate the cabbage!" or "We showed 'em how the hog ate the cabbage". It means "Show 'em how its done" or "We showed them". Everything could always use a little spicing up. Last week, I told Jenny that I ought to get GET 'ER DONE tattooed in big letters on the bottom of my gut and start wearing those shirts that are too small on me. She knew that I wasn't serious, was I? After all, I work with a lot of Appalacian/Americans who would think that is a great idea!

Some of my sayings show my railroad background, like "Its blacker than a trainmaster's heart." A trainmaster is a bottom level supervisor. They usually know very little about the railroad life and are concerned only with being a hard ass so they will get promoted. Some other ones are: "Rougher than a trainmaster's kiss" and "Dumber than a trainmaster's kid." For a railroader, trainmasters make great dupes.

Usually when you decide to live the "saying" lifestyle, you fall into some bad habits. You find a good saying and you beat it to death. I have a few of them. They are my "answer" sayings and I tend to give the same answer every time. You say "How's it going" and I'll answer "Its going. I just don't know how yet!" You say "Have a nice day" and I'll answer "I'll make the heroic effort!" As I go to work, you say "Have a good trip" and I'll answer "Last time I had a good trip was in '86 and I was off work 8 months!" (That's when I dislocated my ankle at work.) You say "Have a safe trip" and I say "Seems to me, any time you trip, how safe can you be?" I have a snappy answer for just about every tired line that people automatically say when they think they're being polite.

I try not to be offensive. I don't say "Colder'n a witch's tit" or anything like that. If I had to come up with a saying, I probably could. As for cold, I'd probably say something like "As cold as a nun's stare at a farting contest." (That's for Fuzzie) I would never mention a well digger's rear end or a brass monkey. You might think that coming up with a good saying is difficult. Its actually pretty easy. I thought of my best lines on the spur of the moment.

I have a number of sayings that can't be shared here. People are just too sensitive now-a-days. You can't tell someone "If my dog looked like you, I'd shave his ass and make him walk backwards" or "Your face could gag a maggot off a meat truck" or "Your pits could make a buzzard puke!" or "You're so ugly, when you were born, the doctor slapped your mom!" Must be that thin skin I was talking about in my last posting. Now its "You're dumber than Bush's energy policy" or "That's scarier than Hillary without her make-up on!" Those are obvious no-brainers!

Old sayings are tired sayings. I believe in modernizing them. Old: "Stiff as a board." New: "Stiffer'n Hef's yard boy." Old: "Dead as a doornail." New: "Dead as a gay Texas gym teacher." Old: "Green as grass." New: "Green as pneumonia snot." Old: "Cold as ice." New: "As cold as Laura Bush at a booger eating contest." and Old: "As slick as snot on an onion." New: "As slick as Monica Lewinsky's cigar."

I'm aware that my use of "sayings" can be rough on my loved ones. After all, how many times can you hear the same old stuff before you want to barf. I've been blessed with a wonderful family who chuckle each time like the first time. That's as rare as a Republican at an NAACP convention, or rarer than Arabs at a hogroast or rarer than front teeth on a hockey team, or...


fuzbukt said...

Well, Max, let's see if I can add to your repertoire:

Someone says: How ya doing?

Answer: Everybody I can. Easy ones twice.

Response: Usually a blank stare, like, "Does this guy have two heads"

Shannon said...

Oh Dad..... well, I would say have a great day, but I know, I know... You'll try but not make any guarantees!

Pat said...

I'm afraid to make a comment for fear of what your response will be. Anyway, I believe everything you blogged because even you couldn't come up with that much balogna. Good stuff ... can't wait 'til the next entry. And, happy b'day if I forget in a coupla weeks.