Tuesday, October 27, 2009

DUMBER THAN A BOX OF ROCKS: THE COMPLETE IDIOT'S GUIDE TO IDIOMS



Well, our little talk about how crazy Cass Sunstein is unleashed a comparison of expressions used here and in Australia. My old Aussie room-mate, also named Jim, when we were working on the 1978 Kenworth at the grain elevator, confused me a bit with, “Hand me the spanner. The SPANNER! It's right bloody THERE!", which I then found out was what we called a “wrench”. I also found out that “c*nt”, as in, “No worries, you c*nt.” seems to be an expression of friendship. OF COURSE I learned what "wanker" meant.
In turn, I tried to give Jim sh*t in regards to converting Metric measurements into our archaic English system. Jim: "How much is a bushell?" Me: "Oh, about three pecks and a gill." Or...Me: "It's 9:30. What time is that in Metric, Jim?"
From my wife, I learned some Swiss expressions, but most don't translate well. Es nimmt zwei Schlangen, um eine Pfütze zu kreuzen.: It takes two snakes to cross a puddle. Der Bär scheißt wherver, das er gefällt.: The bear sh*ts wherever he wants. OK, I just made those up because I couldn't think of any real ones and I like to play with Babelfish
So I thought it would be fun to throw out some of our American idioms, many of which I learned from our father, followed by a translation for those who may need it. For starters, we can throw a large portion of our expressions into the category of scatological; there seems to be an American fascination with feces. But hey, let’s face it, sh*t is funny.

She’s built like a brick sh*thouse.: A shapely woman.
Smells bad enough to knock a buzzard off a sh*twagon.: self explanatory.
The sh*t has hit the fan.: Inauguration Day, January 20, 2009.
Does a bear sh*t in the woods?: Why, of course.
Up shit creek without a paddle.: In a very bad situation.
In deep sh*t.: Getting that "hope & change" you voted for.
Well I’ll be dipped in shit.: I didn’t know that.
Sh*t or get off the pot.: Lead, follow, or get the hell outta the way.
I could sh*t through a screen door at 20 paces.: Suffering from diarrhea.

Once upon a time, until WWII, America was still Jeffersonian in that agriculture was universal. These expressions originated on the farm, and we grew up in the country, with a dad who liked to use such expressions, so many idioms involve livestock and animals.

Ain't got the sense that God gave geese.: Obama supporter.
Nervous as a long-tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs.: Self explanatory.
Even a blind hog finds an acorn now and then.: Everybody gets lucky now and then.
Useless as tits on a boar.: A boar is a male hog for breeding, doesn’t give milk.
Fat as a tick.: Self explanatory.
Raining like a cow pissing on a flat rock.: Any country boy should know this one.
Two shakes of a lamb’s tail.: Real quick.
Knee high to a grasshopper.: Real small.
If it was a snake it woulda bit you.: It’s right there.
Up to my ass in alligators.: The situation ain’t good.
That dog don’t hunt.: Health care is NOT going to “pay for itself.”

Then we have a group of people-related expressions.

Busier than a 1-legged man in an ass-kicking contest.: I hope that’s self explanatory.
Sweating like a whore in church.: Perspiring heavily.
Better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick.: Could be worse.
Couldn’t hit the broad side of a barn.: Very inaccurate.
Hiring you was like losing three good men.: Not a good worker.
This is gonna take two men and a boy.: A major undertaking.
Colder than a witch’s tit in a brass brassiere.: I assume they're cold, but I've never felt one.
He/she fell out of the ugly tree and hit every branch on the way down.: Really ugly.
He/she could eat sweet corn through a picket fence.: Buck toothed.
You make a better door than a window.: Get outta my way.
The Good Lord willing and the creek don’t rise.: If all goes well.
Keep your shirt on.: Don’t get in such a hurry.
You’d bitch if they hung you with a new rope.: Chronic complainer.
Ratchet jaw.: Just won’t quit talking.
Crooked as a politician.: Pretty obvious, that one.
Don’t piss down my back and tell me it’s raining.: Health care IS NOT, REPEAT NOT, GOING TO “pay for itself”.

We could on like this for days, but I’ll leave it up to the rest of you to keep ‘em coming.

4 comments:

Anonymous said...

Here's a few from Kentucky:

Poorer than skimmed piss

He's not worth the powder and shot to blow his brains out.

If his brains were made of gunpowder, he couldn't blow his nose.

Old Whig

Jim Fryar said...

We share most of these but have odd variations:

Up shit creek in a barb wire canoe.
Shitting through the eye of a needle.
Wouldn't shout if a shark bit him. (the shout is an Aussie tradition where each in a group takes his turn to buy a round) Mean.

Ben said...

"Dumber than... a sack of hammers ... a box of hair."

"Cleaner than a preacher's sheets.": (Very clean.)

In the barnyard/animal category-

"Quicker than sh*t through a goose.": (Very quick.) [See also: "Like thin sh*t through a tall Swede."]

"Lower than a snake's belly in a wagon rut.": (Mental or moral lowness.) [See also: "Lower than a gopher's basement."]

"Goin' like a raped ape.": (Running or driving with great haste.)

"Hornier than a two-peckered billy goat.": (Very amorous.)

Mark said...

Slicker than snot on a door knob.

She is so cold the freezer light comes on when you spread her legs..

The above is how I know how cold a witches tit can be.. :) That brass brassiere does not help at all either.

-Mark