Wondering about wild grapes

Thursday, July 29, 2010


Good morning, hope today brings you all more good things than expected.
I was watching an old TV show last night, Gunsmoke. The Western channel has brought back some of the oldies, like Maverick, Cheyenne, Have Gun Will Travel, The Virginian, Cimeron Strip, etc. They sure bring back memories. Anyway, I head Festus (on Gunsmoke), use the word "cabbage" in a way unrelated to the vegetable. It was the second show that I heard him use that word. He used it to mean "get away from doing something", I believe.
This got me to thinking about all the different local sayings and the unique way different words are used for a meaning that only the local people understand. Now, as I said before in one of my blogs, I may have lived a protected life and that is why things surprise me when I hear them, but I don't think I am that different than most people my age. First let me explain that back when I was young, the majority of people grew up, went to school, got a job, raised a family, and died within 30 to 50 miles of where they were born. That is probably why I was so surprised at the different meaning put to words and the different words that I heard in different localities.
Let me start out with my first year (the Fall of 1961) at Pennsylvania State University. Penn State is located in central Pennsylvania and I was raised in western PA up north of Pittsburgh. So Penn State was not that far away but it had students from all over the state.
I told a couple guys that I had to get back and "red up" my room. They asked if I was going to paint it red. In my neck of the woods, "red up" means to tidy up, clean up, neaten up, straighten up, and I have also heard "rid up". My first taste of "the rest of the world". I am sure I learned a lot more words at college than I ever heard at home (grin), but that was my first experience of finding out that word usage was different in different places.
I moved to Michigan much later in life. There, they pronounced words a lot different. My boss told me to check out a problem on the roof. I had to ask him a half dozen times where he wanted me go. He pronounced roof as "rough" or like a dog barks, "ruff". There were a lot of new words to learn, also.
Moved to Texas in 1980. Now, that was a whole new world of language. In fact, you could purchase a book on how to speak Texan. The first word problem I ran into was again at work. When I asked a co-worker a question, he told me to"boogie" on over and ask Joe. I was bewildered. "Boogie", I thought was some kind of dance. Heck, I didn't know Joe well enough to dance with him (grin). Well, as all you Texans know, he wanted me to "go" over and talk with Joe.
Worked a few years on a project in North Carolina. To start off with, when you say BBQ in Texas, it means beef and usually brisket, but in North Carolina it means pork. So right off had a language problem. But this phrase got me when I was told to "get up with" Joe over in the tool room. What the heck did they want me to do with Joe??? I found out that it meant to meet or talk with someone.
There are a lot more and I am sure a lot that I haven't heard (since I live this protected life). So, please let me hear what different and/or strange local sayings you have been confronted with.
Now, dang it, I have to go mend the dog's fence in the rear of my house. The local feral hog just tore it down again. This pig is huge and seems to get bigger and more aggressive every year. It is not afraid of dogs, since she grew up with a couple of them (a story for another time), but returned to the wild at a young age. If you saw the blog I posted on my swamp, you would see why this pig loves my place. She is not going to leave peacefully.
Here is a picture I took early this year of her next to the dogs' fence. That fence is 48" high. That will give you some idea of how huge she is. I don't know how to estimate a pig's weight, but she must weigh at least as much as four men, don't you think? Let me know what you think she weighs.

Remember, you should be able to enlarge the picture by clicking on it.


  1. Good report on language, my culture shock was going to West Virgina from Texas, Know what POKE is? :-)

    and about that hog,, don't fool around with it,, get a 30-06( a shotgun will just piss him off! ) and put an end to your problems. AND you can have one heck of a pork pullin !!! :-)

  2. Yes, Ben, I know what a poke is. I knew what a poke was before I new what a bag was.

    In N.C. it is called pig-picken

  3. The first word I stumbled upon like that was 'modock' or at least I think that is how it would be spelled. It means run, or move fast. He was really modocking down the road. That was in north central Indiana in the 60's. Pronounced with a long O in the first syllable.

  4. Howdy Shadowmoss, that is a good one. I have never heard of that one. Have to add it to my list.

    Thanks for checking in and have great weekend.

  5. Thats one mean lookin hog!

  6. Okay Dick here is one for you, if you come to southern Ohio and speak softly or say something that isn't understood, rather than saying "excuse me or pardon me with a question mark they say "Please?"
    I've lived in Texas, California, Arizona and Florida along with good old Ohio and have never heard that term used by anyone other than a person from this area. When I was in Az and Fla I knew immediately when I ran into someone from Ohio when I heard "Please?"
    That HOG is scary, I'll give it 430 pounds. Sue hate to meet it in a dark alley or anywhere.