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WWJV" ó whom would Jesus vote for?
My favorite novel, as a young person, was In His Steps, written by Charles Sheldon. The premise of this novel is simple. A group of people in the church made a spiritual pact that before doing or saying anything they would preface it by asking the...
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Quotes and Sayings - Colloquialisms Part 1

Additional Reading

ku'lowkeweeu'lizum [n] a colloquial expression; characteristic of spoken or written communication that seeks to imitate informal speech, an expression, a local or regional dialect expression.†

I always remember my grandparents using such colorful quotes and sayings when I was growing up. Later, when I married my husband, we spent time with his grandparents and they had a different set of quotes and sayings that were equally as expressive yet with a southern twist. Some of these colloquialisms are a little crude, vulgar and to some, offensive. We chose to include these quotes and sayings as well as the clean colloquialisms just because they are also part of our culture.

Not too smart - Dumb

"a few kangaroos short in the top paddock"
"dumb as a load of coal"
"two sandwiches short of a picnic"
"not the sharpest tool in the shed"
"one brick shy of a full load"
"toys in the attic"
"the lights are on but there's nobody home"
"not the sharpest knife in the drawer"
"not the brightest bulb on the string"
"one French fry short of a Happy Meal"
"one donut short of a dozen"
"he couldn't make a noun and a verb agree if his life depended on it"
"if brains were dynamite, he'd be dangerous"
"he's a quart low in the crankcase"
"so dumb he couldn't hit the broad side of the barn"
"dumb as a rock"
"if you had a brain you'd be dangerous!"
"can't put a square peg in a round hole"
"that boy's always going to be a day late and a dollar short"
"dumber than a sled rack"
"dumber than a sledge hammer"
"dumber'n dirt"
"dumber than a June bug on a string"
"dumber than a box of rocks"
"too dumb to pound sand in a rat hole"
"slow as mud"
"ain't got both oars in the water"
"porch light is on, but there ain't nobody home"
"so confused he donít know whether to scratch his watch or wind his behind"
"dumber than a box of rocks"
"if you were twice as smart, you would be a half-wit"
"dumb as a post"
"the engine's runnin' but ain't nobody driving"
"two bricks shy of a full load"
"he's crazier than a road-runnin' lizard"
"crazy as a loon"
"if all his brains were dynamite, he couldn't blow his nose"
"dumb as a stump"
"smart as a whip"


"blind as a bat"
"if it was a snake it'd've bit me"
"a blind man could see that with his cane"
"Ray Charles could see that"

Exclamation - Excitement

"grate day-in-na mawnin!!" - great day in the morning!
"well, I'll swan!"
"slick as a whistle!" - said when something went well
"hell in a hand basket" - going to pot
"going to pot" - going to hell
"I'll be cow kicked by a mule!"
"wouldn't that just dill your pickle?" - Used to express dismay over something that has or might happen.
"wicked awesome!"
"wicked cool"
"wicked awful good"
"some wicked awful good"
"bless her heart" - You can say anything about someone, however unkind, as long as you bless her when you're done. "She's dumb as a bag o'hammers, bless her heart."

Experienced - Not dumb

"I like to think that I've 'been around the block few times, just so I don't look that way."
"do I look like I just fell off a turnip truck?"
"well don't that just beat all"
"smart as a whip"
"sharper than a tack"
"This ain't my first rodeo"

Ugly, Pretty

"uglier than the south bound end of a north bound donkey"
"uglier than a burnt stump"
"you're purtier than a glob of butter meltin' on a stack of wheat cakes"
"prettier than a blue-nosed mule."
"uglier than the east end of a horse headed west"
"cuter than a speckled pup"
"he looks like the dog's been keepin' him under the porch" - Not handsome
"when I was a kid, I was so ugly that my mother had to tie pork chops to my ears so the dog would play with me."
"ugly as sin"

Comments Made About People

"you could grow potatoes in those dirty ears"
"sweet as honey"
"got off like a fat rat with cheese"
"as full of wind as a corn-eating horse" - prone to boasting
"he's got a ten-gallon mouth" - talkative
"low man on the totem pole"
"cool as a cucumber"
"flat as a pancake"
"workin' like a dog"
"meaner 'n a rattlesnake"
"old as Moses' toes"
"hair as black as coal"
"deaf as a doorknob/blind as a bat"
"so skinny they have to stand up twice to make a shadow"
"couldn't hit a barn if you were on the inside, with the door closed"
"ants in her pants"
"so windy he could blow up an onion sack"
"so useless if he had a third hand he would need another pocket to put it in"
"lower than a snake in a wagon track"
"sly as a fox"
"strong as an ox"
"dishwater blond"
"he/she sure has hay on his/her horns today"
"sat there like a bump on a log"
"actiní like she's got bees in her bonnet"
"you look like you have been drug through a knot hole backwards."
"ugly as sin"
"straight as an arrow"
"as sweet as pie"
"skinny as a bean pole"
"cant carry a tune in a bucket" - cant sing
"butter wouldn't melt in her mouth" - cold woman
"as loose as a goose"
"just ignore him and he'll die quietly in a corner." - said when really annoyed with someone
"over the hill"
"can't burn both ends of a stick (or candle) at the same time"
"stubborn as a mule"
"naked as a jaybird"
"I hope she lives to a 150 and looks it"
"she should get some shoes to go with those bags" - said when someone looks really tired
"do you have shoes to go with my bags?" - if I am looking really tired
"up & down like a whore's drawers" - refers to a nervous person, up & down
"doesn't know his behind from a hole in the ground"
"slicker (or cleaner) than a hounds tooth."
"slipperier than snot on a glass doorknob"
"colder than a well-digger's feet in Alaska"
"dead as a doornail"
"fit as a fiddle"
"quiet as a mouse"
"looks like the cat that a swallowed the canary"
"two ax handles wide across the behind" - fat
"two ax handles and a rain barrel" - fat
"like a fish out of water"
"lying like a snake in the grass"
"lies like an old rug"


"sure you can date; in fact Iíll be waiting for him in the front yard while I sharpen my machete"
"yes, he has to come to the door and pick you upÖ how else will I get the change to interrogate him?"
"if he wants to date you, he has to get through me first!!" - referring to a date who blows the car horn for you
"now just wait a minute, youíre moviní so fast you look like one of Pavlovs dogs runniní for the bell"
"well that is rude. How rude? Iíll tell you how rude"
"well he can just stay out there and blow his horn, and maybe heíll get some cows to come home"
"donít stay out later than when the cows come home"

Slow, Fast

"high-tailing it" - running fast
"fast as a rabbit"
"like green corn through the new maid"

Stop Yer complaininí

"well itís better than a kick in the arse with a frozen boot!"
"well, itís better than a poke in the eye with a blunt stick!"
"want in one hand, spit in the other, and see which one gets full first." - reply to someone that wants something
"itís better than a sharp stick in the eye"

Poor, Rich, Money

"don't have a pot to p___ in or a window to throw it out of"
"poor as a church mouse"
"he may be good looking but good looking won't put food on the table"
"you've got champagne taste with a beer pocketbook" - expensive taste
"don't have one penny to rub against another one"
"tighter than bark on a tree" - not generous
"don't have a pot to pee in or a window to throw it out" - poor
"he's got enough money to burn a wet mule"
"filthy rich"
"dirt poor"


"he's so dishonest he'd rather p--s in the wind than tell the truth"
"he knows more ways to take your money than a roomful of lawyers"

Eat, Drinking and Cooking

"wetting your whistle" - getting a drink
"gooder 'an candy and better 'an snuff" - grandma's cookin'
"he eats like a pin in a swaller"
"stump water" - weak coffee
"don't swallow watermelon seeds or you'll wake up one morning with vines growing out of your ears"
"tad, smidgen, dab" - Grannyís cooking measurements
"tough as shoe leather"
"grub's on"

How You Doing?

"oh, I'm circlin' the drain"
"fair to midlin" - I am told that this has to do with grading cotton
"if I had a tail, it'd be waggin'"
"well, better 'n gettin' poked in the eye, I suppose"

Tell Someone to Get Lost

"take a long walk off a short pier"
"away and boil your head" - telling someone to get lost

Yes, No, Maybe, Never......

"I might could do that" - maybe
"when pigs fly" - never
"If the good Lord willin' and the crick don't rise" - when asked about the likelihood of just about anything happening
"does a bear s**t in the woods"


"You kids are noisier than a fox in the henhouse"
"You're so loud you could wake the dead"
"Speak up, I think that mountain goat in Tibet did'n hear you!"


"son of a gosh darned sassaffras root!" - cussing around children

About the Author

Lisa Jay is a freelance writer and the jewelry designer behind Lantana Designwear. You can visit her websites at http://www.LantanaDesignwear.com and www.JewelryMakingHQ.com
Be sure to sign up for her newsletter at http://www.LantanaDesignwear.com/signup_newsletter to receive information on jewelry, fashion and womens issues.


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