Hope everyone had a delightful Memorial Day weekend and took the time to thank those who made it possible for you to scarf down all that grilled flesh and homemade ice cream. To my great-grand and grandfathers' I say thank you for serving, to my great-uncle Curly I raise a thank you prayer for making the ultimate sacrifice and to The Brother-In-Law and all my school chums who are still serving I say a huge thank you! America wouldn’t be the place we know today without your willingness to stand up for it.
I posed the question today to my Facebook friends for a blog topic. Can you tell my creative tank is running on fumes? Trust me it is. Surprisingly, my school chum Scott presented me with a question which turned into a full blown idea the more I thought about it.
“Yeah why do they say cut the cheese when anytime I have ever actually cut a block of cheese it doesn't make that sound or stink? Just throwing an idea.” -Scott
My next thought after reading this was, “Cripes, how did I get myself into discussing farts?” Anyway, the question is out there so here we go.
Colorful slang and old sayings … where do they really come from?
Now if you live in the south, you know our language patterns are full of these things. They’re as much a part of us as sweet tea and pecan pie. But where exactly did most of them originate? I know for my family, some are passed down from grandparent, parent to child then some have evolved over time. My family has some doozy’s and the stories to go along with them. Don’t think we in the south are the only ones with these elaborate sentence enhancers though.
I learned living in Minnesota for a year they’re eat up with oddities in their speech patterns, not counting the obvious ones concerning the accent. Where we tend to fill our sentences with color and texture, Minnesotans clip and cut necessary pieces. It's a heat conservation thing I think. They can't waste the heat and energy filling their sentences with extra words. An example, for the first six months we lived there folks kept asking me if I wanted to “go with” but never would tell me where the hell they wanted to go! It drove me nuts until I figured out the pattern. As you can imagine, we bumpkins were quite the funhouse freaks in Hermantown, MN.
Now to answer Scott’s question.
CUT THE CHEESE - Vulgar Slang To expel (a discharge of intestinal gas). (www.thefreedictionary.com)
According to my research, this slang originated in the 1965-1970’s because there're actually some kinds of cheese that are quite odoriferous when sliced. The slang took hold due to an increase in the marketing industry's need to draw in more consumers through shocking photos, jingles and vulgar phrasing. This also proves you can research ANYTHING on the internet.
Scott, I hope that answered your question on the subject. *face to palm*
Thanks to my cheeky friend, I also wondered just where a lot of my own favorite slang originated. Here's a few so you can see what I mean.
“A hit dog hollers” for those times when no one will own up to an especially awful bit of methane. Can also be related to the more modern “he who smelt it delt it”.
“You look like a Vardell Manassco” *one of my grandmother’s originals* Used when your clothes or appearance is unacceptable.
“She needs to be smacked upside her head” This one is self explanatory.
Mulling these and some others over, I came up with three definite sources: family, environment and my love of reading. You’d only have to attend one Sunday dinner at my grandmother’s house to know that’s the truth. We’re a loud, long-winded bunch, but southern to the core and slam-full of more of these colorful sentence fillers than you can imagine.
I’ve said this before, to write you must read. On the flip side though, to write about life you must live it, gas bubbles and all. If you want to write about it, well then after you’re done experiencing it, you have to research your ideas to make them viable. It's a delicate balancing act of learning we must perform don't you think?
Reading is one of the best things you can do for your brain besides math, which I can’t in good conscience recommend. Reading expands your vocabulary, your knowledge base and opens you up to things you may never actually see or touch in real life. Will I ever go to Sweden? Doubt it, but I can read about it. Will I ever understand intestinal gas and why all male humans think it’s so dang funny? Sheesh, I sincerely hope not. But I can research its causes, compare my own experiences to others and expand my mind with new knowledge. Who knows, I might need to write about it someday.
In closing, never be afraid to find out more about a subject, no matter how embarrassing or disgusting. There's always the possiblty that one bit of grossness will pull you out of a sticky part of life later on. Thank you Scott for tickling my brain with this bit of ick. Your question gave me quite a few giggles and helped produce a nearly 800 word discussion on toots. May all males that read this be joyful--but not too joyful. Otherwise, please keep THAT to yourself. *pinches off nose and runs away*Till Then,