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Thread: Local idioms

  1. #241
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    I used the term "no skin off my teeth" the other day and the person I was speaking to was completely befuddled. (It means "doesn't concern me" or "doesn't phase me.")

    I've noticed that, in some areas of the South, the cashiers/clerks will give you your change and if you say "Thank you," they just say "Uh huh." Not "You're welcome," which is what I'm accustomed to hearing.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Grannyfan View Post
    Sweet milk is just regular whole milk as opposed to buttermilk.
    My dad's parents were Big Mama and Big Daddy...they were from Mississippi. I live in the Midwest and I remember as a kid having to explain to folks that those were my grandparents. Now I know that these were common terms for grandparents in the south.

    I remember one time going to Big Mama's house and her offering me some cake and sweet milk. And I said yes, because you never turn down treats from Big Mama! I thought she was going to give me chocolate milk or something, but she brought me the cake and this big glass of regular milk. I don't drink milk, so you can imagine how disappointed I was.
    The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are--Joseph Campbell

  3. #243
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    Quote Originally Posted by Artemis@BC View Post

    Of course we'd never call it "going to college," it's "going to university." Unless you were going to the local community or regional college, then it would be "going to the college." But now almost all of the former colleges in the provinces have become universities, so "going to college" is rarely uttered.
    Here, we say going to college, regardless of whether its a community college or a huge university.

    Quote Originally Posted by FigureSpins View Post
    I used the term "no skin off my teeth" the other day and the person I was speaking to was completely befuddled. (It means "doesn't concern me" or "doesn't phase me.")

    I've noticed that, in some areas of the South, the cashiers/clerks will give you your change and if you say "Thank you," they just say "Uh huh." Not "You're welcome," which is what I'm accustomed to hearing.
    Do you think that is a regional thing or a "times" thing. I think that we (as a society) have lost politeness. Please and thank-you are just mumbled or not said at all. My pet peeve is, holding a door for someone and having them walk through and say nothing.

  4. #244
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    Quote Originally Posted by cruisin View Post
    Here, we say going to college, regardless of whether its a community college or a huge university.
    I've noticed that's widespread in the US. In Canada, a college is seen as a lesser institution that an university (even if many are not, and many colleges are in fact part of universities), so people are more likely to make the distinction, as in "we met in university."

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    Quote Originally Posted by FigureSpins View Post
    I used the term "no skin off my teeth" the other day and the person I was speaking to was completely befuddled. (It means "doesn't concern me" or "doesn't phase me.”)
    I’ve heard it as “No skin off my nose” and one escapes a bad event by “the skin of their teeth."

    I've noticed that, in some areas of the South, the cashiers/clerks will give you your change and if you say "Thank you," they just say "Uh huh." Not "You're welcome," which is what I'm accustomed to hearing.
    It ain’t just the South...
    "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity”– MLK

  6. #246
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    Quote Originally Posted by cruisin View Post
    Do you think that is a regional thing or a "times" thing. I think that we (as a society) have lost politeness. Please and thank-you are just mumbled or not said at all. My pet peeve is, holding a door for someone and having them walk through and say nothing.
    I do think it's a regional thing, not a lack of friendliness or manners. Holding the door for someone nets a big "Thank You!" to which the response is "uh huh." It doesn't make sense to me, but that's what it is. Initially, I thought it was my carpetbagger accent turning them off, but people with drawls get the same response.

    I avoid one of the clerks at the sports center because of her lousy customer service skills. I spend over $300 in one transaction, had to ask twice for a receipt and then she forgot the $200+ punch card I purchased. Didn't get an "oh, sorry" so I knew that there wouldn't be a "thanks" or "welcome" on the horizon. Rude, incompetent moron.

    I almost forgot: allegedly, when a southern person says "bless your heart," it's not really a blessing or compliment. According to various books and magazines, it's the equivalent of telling someone to drop dead. I don't think it's true in every case though, because I helped an older woman in the supermarket with something from a high shelf (she was in an electric scooter) and she said "bless your heart" to me quite sincerely. I hadn't opened my Yankee mouth yet, so she wouldn't have known where I was from.

    Quote Originally Posted by Reuven View Post
    I’ve heard it as “No skin off my nose” and one escapes a bad event by “the skin of their teeth."
    I think you're right. That explains the look - I mixed-and-matched idioms! *laughs at self*

    To the "uh huh" vs. "you're welcome:" when I worked in Corporate Retail Training, we had to teach the clerks to say "No, thank YOU" in response to a customer's thank you. That was a failed effort - no one got the mystery shopper bonus!! It was a lost cause, so we settled for the "You're welcome." Guess that's not part of the script today at the various chains.
    Last edited by FigureSpins; 02-11-2012 at 08:33 PM.

  7. #247
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    Quote Originally Posted by FigureSpins View Post
    I used the term "no skin off my teeth" the other day and the person I was speaking to was completely befuddled. (It means "doesn't concern me" or "doesn't phase me.")

    I've noticed that, in some areas of the South, the cashiers/clerks will give you your change and if you say "Thank you," they just say "Uh huh." Not "You're welcome," which is what I'm accustomed to hearing.
    How about this one - "no problem" instead of "You're welcome"? That's not exactly a response to "thank you", is it?

    And your first comment - I've also heard "no skin off my nose". I know what it means, but why would you have skin on your teeth?

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    Quote Originally Posted by cruisin View Post
    I've heard East Jebib lots of times, along with booies, boons, Outer Mongolia, middle of nowhere, all expressions that are used here.
    Really? This was clear back in the early 80's. Maybe my cousin's roommate's sister was the first one to say it and everybody else picked it up!!?? :-)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Susan1 View Post
    How about this one - "no problem" instead of "You're welcome"? That's not exactly a response to "thank you", is it?

    And your first comment - I've also heard "no skin off my nose". I know what it means, but why would you have skin on your teeth?
    I admit to saying no problem. I think that is just a variation of it's no trouble at all or it's no problem at all. Sometimes I say, it's my pleasure.

    Quote Originally Posted by Susan1 View Post
    Really? This was clear back in the early 80's. Maybe my cousin's roommate's sister was the first one to say it and everybody else picked it up!!?? :-)
    My mom said it when I was little, way, way before the '80s.

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    Quote Originally Posted by FigureSpins View Post

    I almost forgot: allegedly, when a southern person says "bless your heart," it's not really a blessing or compliment. According to various books and magazines, it's the equivalent of telling someone to drop dead. I don't think it's true in every case though, because I helped an older woman in the supermarket with something from a high shelf (she was in an electric scooter) and she said "bless your heart" to me quite sincerely. I hadn't opened my Yankee mouth yet, so she wouldn't have known where I was from.
    It's situational and depends on the context. Although I'd disagree that it's the equivalent of telling someone to drop dead. It's more along the lines of pitying someone's taste or choice or traits or saying "poor thing". I find it used more often not to a person but about someone.
    Last edited by milanessa; 02-11-2012 at 11:04 PM.
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    Quote Originally Posted by milanessa View Post
    It's situational and depends on the context. Although I'd disagree that it's the equivalent of telling someone to drop dead. It's more along the lines of pitying someone's taste or choice or traits or saying "poor thing". I find it used more often not to a person but about someone.
    I always thought "bless your heart" was a hilariously backhanded "aww, you're too stupid to live." Unless, that is, someone says it to me.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Spinner View Post
    I always thought "bless your heart" was a hilariously backhanded "aww, you're too stupid to live." Unless, that is, someone says it to me.
    Aww, bless your heart.

    I'm sorry, I just had to. You so, set us up for that!

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    Quote Originally Posted by cruisin View Post
    Aww, bless your heart.

    I'm sorry, I just had to. You so, set us up for that!

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    Quote Originally Posted by cruisin View Post
    Aww, bless your heart.

    I'm sorry, I just had to. You so, set us up for that!
    Nah, on it's own isn't how it would be used. It would be something like "That Spinner boy takes after his daddy's uncle, bless his heart."

    And everyone would know they're talking about the village idiot.

    One I used to hear a lot was if a young woman was a bit overweight. They'd just say "She has such a pretty face, bless her heart." Implicit in that was that she was unattractive due to being overweight.
    Last edited by milanessa; 02-13-2012 at 05:35 AM.
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    I never knew the word "chotchkies" until I heard it on one of the HGTV programs. Down here we call them "what-nots."

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    The "bless your heart" discussion reminds me of this:

    Speak English in 3 Words: http://youtu.be/6mUJ2QiXjVs

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    Quote Originally Posted by Grannyfan View Post
    I never knew the word "chotchkies" until I heard it on one of the HGTV programs. Down here we call them "what-nots."
    "Tchotchkies" is Yiddish, like "chazzerai"
    "Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity”– MLK

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    Quote Originally Posted by milanessa View Post
    Nah, on it's own isn't how it would be used. It would be something like "That Spinner boy takes after his daddy's uncle, bless his heart."

    And everyone would know they're talking about the village idiot.

    One I used to hear a lot was if a young woman was a bit overweight. They'd just say "She has such a pretty face, bless her heart." Implicit in that was that she was unattractive due to being overweight.
    You mean, I tried to make a joke and didn't know how to use the expression? :slink away

    Spinner, you know I was just kidding, right?

    Quote Originally Posted by Grannyfan View Post
    I never knew the word "chotchkies" until I heard it on one of the HGTV programs. Down here we call them "what-nots."
    That is a Yiddish word. Oh, Reuven already said that, sorry

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    Quote Originally Posted by cruisin View Post
    You mean, I tried to make a joke and didn't know how to use the expression? :slink away
    To be expected - you're from New Jersey.
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    I learned very quickly once I moved out of Northeastern US that Yiddish sayings are not generally known outside that region, with specific regional exceptions - never mind outside the US. I remember having to explain "tuckus" to someone I worked with in Ireland, who'd never heard the term, never heard any other Yiddish, and didn't know what Yiddish was. With me not knowing that it wasn't a term that everyone knew and used, because where I was from, everyone did.
    And so, dear Lord, it is with deep sadness that we turn over to you this young woman, whose dream to ride on a giant swan resulted in her death. Maybe it is your way of telling us... to buy American.

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