It’s easy to overlook life’s everyday conveniences, isn’t it? We can illuminate a room with the flip of a switch, take a shower with the turn of a knob, and have face-to-face conversations with people around the world. We can also break-and-bake our way to cookies that taste just like homemade—11 to 13 minutes in a preheated oven—and no one needs to be the wiser. No doubt we’re living in the lap of luxury. [Read more…]
I’d like to think my vocabulary has always been on the cutting edge—that I’ve been among the cool crowd when it comes to staying current on all things slang. Some days, though, I wonder if I’m slipping, because many of today’s terms fly right over my head. Before I can play it cool, I first need to consult my kids for definitions.
Take hundo-p, for example. Basically, this 21st Century term signals agreement with someone, and can be used in place of “yes, I agree” or “of course.” There’s also the term ‘sick’, which has nothing in common with the traditional definition of being ill. Sick today means far out or awesome.The latest term I’ve learned is high key. This one refers to anything you’re particularly proud to say out loud or announce to the world, and is the (maybe obvious) opposite of low-key.
Where they come up with these phrases, who comes up with them and how they spread like some social disease is beyond me. I do know that every generation creates its own terms, just as sure as the generation before wonders what on earth they’re talking about when they use them—at least for the most part.
Many sayings from the 1940s and 50s (and earlier) are still going strong—terms like bee’s knees, fuddy-duddy, cool beans and cooking with gas come to mind. But once we dip back into the 1800s, all bets are off. While most of the terms from those days are probably best left in the 19th Century, here are seven that should make a swift return to our everyday language.
Butter upon bacon
For starters, this term has it all, like peanut butter and jelly or green eggs and ham. If you have butter and bacon, you should want for nothing. Food aside, this term refers to over the top or excessive extravagance—or as Colton used to say, too many muches. For example, a woman who’s wearing every item in her jewelry box could be said to have put butter upon bacon. See also gaudy. (By the way, is breakfast ready yet?)
Crabshells was a slang term for shoes. As in, “These crabshells are killing my feet.” Luckily for the men and women of that time period, I saw no evidence that the crabshells and the shoes were one and the same, so they had that going for them.
Got the morbs.
Here’s a term you can probably figure out on your own. Imagine you run into a friend at the grocery, and he or she doesn’t seem very happy. Maybe they have a case of melancholy, or morbs.
“What’s wrong?” you may say. “You got the morbs?”
The root cause for morbs can vary, of course. But try not to worry. A case of the morbs is said to be temporary, and usually much easier to deal with than a case of the flu.
A lally cooler is another way of saying success, as in, this week’s post is sure to be a real lally cooler. Enough said.
Make a stuffed bird laugh
If you can make a stuffed bird laugh, you’ve said something shocking, preposterous or otherwise absurd. This phrase will come in handy the next time Colton wants to stay home from school so he can play video games. “That’s enough to make a stuffed bird laugh,” I’ll say. It could also make pigs fly. Maybe both.
This may be my favorite, for no other reason than it’s fun to say: Podsnappery.Be sure to hold out that first syllable—pohhhhd—for maximum effect.Try it. See? Anyway, people with podsnappery tendencies are likely to turn a blind and uncaring eye to reality while remaining happily self-absorbed, They believe even the most unpleasant of facts will go away if ignored. I’m sure you know the type.
This one could be a lot of fun, too. At first glance, I thought a rain napper might be someone who enjoys taking a nap in the rain (like me). But that would be too easy. Instead, a rain napper is an umbrella. I like this one so much that I may never use the word umbrella again. Instead I’ll pull out my trusty rain napper every time it storms. Who’s with me?
There you have it—a rundown of seven words worthy of re-appearing in the 21st Century. Add them to your vocabulary. Try them out on friends and family, use them in your daily conversations, pepper them throughout emails and social media posts. Just don’t go butter upon bacon.
I had a run-in with the bathroom sinks in a superstore the other day, and it wasn’t pretty. It also wasn’t the first time something like this has happened. In fact, I’d guesstimate this was run-in #17,483.
I reached my tipping point the other day, though. Enough is enough, after all, which brings me to today’s (semi) rhetorical question. Am I the only one who’s pining for the days of old where public restrooms are concerned? The only one who’d prefer sinks with working handles capable of producing both hot and cold water? The sole superstore customer who expects something more than a light puff of air with which to dry my hands?
The most recent debacle started as I approached the sink to wash my hands like a normal person. I waved my hand in front of the sink, waiting for the motion sensor to kick in and the water to turn on. No luck. [Read more…]
I like a clean house. Everything in its place, and a place for everything. Spotlessly shiny floors, dust-free blinds, clutter-free counters, and maybe a little orange peel and rosemary simmering on the stove.
This can only mean one thing: I need a housekeeper. One who’ll show up at least twice a week. Because what I like and what I live with are two entirely different things. [Read more…]
This past weekend, my Aunt Mary was having some issues with technology, namely her digital personal assistant, Alexa. No matter what my aunt commanded, Alexa was unresponsive. Needless to say, Aunt Mary was none too happy. In an age where we’ve become more and more reliant on smart technology, such dilemmas are frustrating at best, especially when a solution isn’t readily at hand.
For any of you who may not be familiar with Alexa, she is the virtual voice inside Amazon speakers such as Echo. Alexa is quite talented for a virtual voice. She can recite the weather forecast, recommend a dinner recipe, or help you create a shopping list. She can also play the song, “Life is a Highway,” over and over and over. Just ask my 4-year-old nephew. This day, though, Alexa was doing none of that. [Read more…]