When the cat’s away…

So there I was, sitting on a bench in Central Park at dusk with Sonny. We were enjoying the sunset and talking about our day in the Big Apple, when, out of the corner of my eye, I saw movement. Surely it's a little birdie kicking around in the leaves looking for a worm, I … Continue reading When the cat’s away…

The odds and ends

I’m halfway there. Halfway to 30 posts in 30 days. Halfway through #bloglikecrazy. We’ve looked at umpteen idioms over the past couple of weeks, and I hope you’ve learned a few new ones, remembered some old ones, and had a few laughs along the way. I too have learned some new ones from your comments, … Continue reading The odds and ends

Dead as a doornail

“Don't look forward to the day you stop suffering, because when it comes you'll know you're dead.” That quote is from Tennessee Williams, the famous Mississippi-born playwright. How else will you know you’re dead? You’ll hear people using these idioms about you: He was dead as a doornail. Doornails are long enough to connect the … Continue reading Dead as a doornail

Stand on a nickel…

He wore a white oxford shirt, frayed at the collar and cuffs. Long, bony wrists protruded from his sleeves. His hair was always a little shaggy, what there was left of it. His tie was stained with the remnants of sandwiches past, threadbare, wrinkled. Khaki pants, just a little too short. If he’d’ve kicked off … Continue reading Stand on a nickel…

We just stepped on their face with a hobnailed boot!

If football is the religion of the South, then it’s only natural that we get a few proverbs from its playbook. Since it’s Saturday, here are some football terms that have entered our everyday lingo. Let’s go to church. Back up and punt. When the offensive team has failed to make a first down and … Continue reading We just stepped on their face with a hobnailed boot!

Trying to turn mutton into lamb

Today’s idiom involves etiquette which, in the south, is gospel. Our commandments not only include the big ten, but a litany of others ranging from using the right fork to sending thank you notes. There are certain things you do … and certain things you just don’t do. Ever. No matter if the rule of … Continue reading Trying to turn mutton into lamb

I don’t know whether to…

For more than a year, we’ve been knee-deep in election coverage. We’ve endured debate after debate after debate. The pundits have analyzed the pea turkey out of every minute detail. The polls, oh...the polls. Families and friends quit speaking to each other. Social media exploded with hate, bigotry, and vitriol. Urban militias were formed. Women … Continue reading I don’t know whether to…

Every old crow thinks hers is blackest

Every old crow thinks hers is the blackest. This idiom is most commonly a statement of parental pride. Every parent thinks their child is the sweetest, smartest, and most beautiful. And of course they are! But I chose this saying for Election Day 2016 because of its greater meaning. Everyone thinks their cause is right … Continue reading Every old crow thinks hers is blackest

Nervous as a cat in a room full of rocking chairs

A cat will suck the very breath out of a baby and kill it. No, wait. If a cat jumps over a grave, the occupant will rise again, vampire-like. Or is it that a cat will steal your soul? Whatever it is, Southerners have traditionally been deeply suspicious of cats. Mawmaw Atkins refused to even … Continue reading Nervous as a cat in a room full of rocking chairs

Too poor to paint and too proud to whitewash

I have idioms for my idioms. This thought occurred to me this morning while I was in the shower. That’s where I do my best thinking, where I get my best ideas. And this morning I was thinking about the phrase “Too poor to paint and too proud to whitewash.” It’s like being between a … Continue reading Too poor to paint and too proud to whitewash