• 48°

Ya’ll hairy back

From time to time, a handful of readers will offer comments on these words I write every week.

Most of the comments are kind (bless ya’ll’s hearts). Other times there are those who will disagree with something I wrote. I value both types of responses for the same reason n you are reading these words.

With that said, I received a recent (okay, so it wasn’t all that recent, as a matter of fact I heard it back around Christmas, but what’s a few odd months between friends) request to republish one of my columns dealing with Southern words and phrases.

So, nearly five months later, here goes one I penned back in 2004.

I will focus my attention this week on Southern words. What’s so great about slang words or phrases heard only below the Mason-Dixon Line is that they can stand alone as complete sentences. That’s a good thing because people from other parts of the country have accused Southerners of talking way too slow. With one-word sentences or phrases, we don’t have to talk so much, therefore speeding up the process when attempting to communicate with Yankees (that is if they can understand what we’re saying, and vice-versa).

Listed below are a few &uot;single-word&uot; sentences found in the South:

Yeet – is a question dealing with the consumption of food.

Yeetyet – is an extended question concerning a possible time for consuming food products.

Naw – a negative response.

Nawu – a negative response, but with a question.

Uowntto – an inquisitive invitation.

Put the above words together between two Southerners and this is what you get – &uot;Yeetyet. Nawu. Uowntto.&uot; In English that means: Have you yet enjoyed the dining experience today? No, have you? Would you like to join me for an exquisite meal?

See how simple it is down here in the South. With three little words, two rednecks were able to sit down with a plateful of barbecue, taters, slaw, hushpuppies, nana pudding and tea sweeter than a baby’s bottom. Meanwhile, the Yankees are still bickering over if they should visit a sushi bar or order Chinese take-out.

Southerners also have the unique ability to take a word from the English language and transform it into a complete phase. Check out the following examples:

Bagel, to most, that’s a roll of dough, first simmered in water and then baked. However, in the South, it’s an adjective, meaning &uot;quite large.&uot; Example: Dadgum, that’s a bagel bowl of grits ya got there.&uot;

In the South, impa tickler means, specifically. Example: &uot;Whatcha doin tonite?&uot; &uot;Nuttin impa tickler.&uot;

Hairy Back – no, it’s not someone with a hormone problem, but rather, in Southernism, a wish for an immediate return. Example: &uot;Ya ‘ll hairy back now, ya hear.&uot;

Fascinate – means, to most folks, to arouse interest. But the definition changes down here into, &uot;the number of buttons a person is able to complete.&uot; Example: &uot;I have 10 buttons on my shirt, but my belly’s so big that I can only fascinate.&uot;

Here are some other true Southern words.

Spearmint – a procedure to explore a scientific method. Example: &uot;I jus did a spearmint to see if my pickup truck could run on Jack Daniels instead of gasoline.&uot;

Grain – a mixture of yellow and blue. &uot;Did you see that purty gal with Bubba? I’m grain with envy.&uot;

Urine – occurring or done at the end of the year. &uot;Y’all come on down for our urine clearance.&uot;

Purtnear – the act of being close. &uot;I’m 16, that means I’m purtnear ready to graduate from kindergarten.&uot;

Ford – to advance. &uot;We need us a president that will move this country ford.&uot;

Groan – to increase in size. &uot;Betty Sue’s little boy sure has groan up.&uot;

Hard – to become employed. &uot;I just got hard as a cook down at the Tastee Freeze.&uot;

Holt – past tense of, to hold. &uot;That dawg took holt of my pants leg and just wouldn’t let go.&uot;

Jawjuh – a Southern state. &uot;Me and my brother drove down to Atlanta, Jawjuh to see the Braves play.&uot;

Mayter – a red vegetable used as the primary ingredient in ketchup. &uot;I’m hungry. Fix me a mayter sandwich!&uot;

Barn – to obtain an object. &uot;My neighbor keeps barn my shovel and won’t bring it back.&uot;

Injun – a machine that converts energy into mechanical force. &uot;Man, that truck sure has a big injun.&uot;

Aint – the sister of one of your parents (note: if you are really from the Deep South, your Aint may be the sister of both your parents). &uot;Aint Pearl ate supper with us.&uot;

Maudlin – the act of displaying. &uot;She’s right purty. She’s done some maudlin for the Sears catalogue.&uot;

Tar – a rubber wheel. &uot;I’m hoping the tar on my pick-up truck don’t go flat.&uot;

Modem – an increased quantity. &uot;I’m gonna git me modem moon pies!&uot;

Pacifier – to move around or past a fire. &uot;I drove pacifier because the far department was already puttin’ it out!&uot;

Polease – a law enforcement officer. &uot;The polease pulled me over after I drove pacifier.

Raffle – a firearm. &uot;Son, fetch me my raffle.&uot;

Vitamin – a cordial welcome inside a residence. &uot;Bubba’s here. Well, vitamin.&uot;

I’ll stop here. I’ve worked up an appetite. Yeetyet?