Funny Southern Sayings, Expressions, and Slang

Updated on May 10, 2015
Whatcha gonna do when the crick runs dry?
Whatcha gonna do when the crick runs dry? | Source

Translating Southern Sayings

As a transplanted Yankee living in the South, I am often surprised and amazed by the colorful Southern things I hear. Of course, there are the good old standbys we all know and love, like "y'all" and "down yonder." But the richness of Southern speech goes far beyond one or two-word expressions and there's a Southern expression for every occasion.

While their images and colloquialisms tickle the funny bone, Southern expressions usually convey exactly what the speaker intended. No one can mistake the intent and meaning of "I'm going to jerk a knot in your tail!" On the other hand, there are some Southernisms that it might take a Yankee like me years to figure out without a translator.

For example, here is an expression I've never ever heard above the Mason-Dixon line: "That possum's on the stump!" (Translation: That's as good as it gets!)

Or this one: "His heart is a thumpin' gizzard." (Translation: He's cold-hearted and cruel.)

Whether you are from another part of the country or from another country altogether, I hope you enjoy this collection of Southern sayings.

Pitching a hissy fit.
Pitching a hissy fit. | Source

When a Southerner Gets Angry:

  • He's got a burr in his saddle.
  • His knickers are in a knot.
  • She's having a hissy fit.
  • She has a hissy fit with a tail on it. (When she’s more pissed off.)
  • He has a duck fit. (One step above a hissy fit.)
  • She has a dying duck fit. (Translation: Run and hide!)

Southern Sayings About Bad Character:

  • You're lower than a snake's belly in a wagon rut.
  • He's slicker'n owl sh*t.
  • She’s meaner than a wet panther.
  • He's a snake in the grass.
  • Why, that egg-suckin' dawg!

When Southerners Are Busy:

  • I been running all over hell's half acre.
  • She's busier than a cat covering crap on a marble floor.
  • I'm as busy as a one-legged cat in a sandbox.
  • Busier than a moth in a mitten!

Running like a headless chicken.
Running like a headless chicken. | Source

Southern Sayings About Conceit and Vanity:

  • She's so stuck up, she'd drown in a rainstorm.
  • She’s stuck up higher than a light-pole.
  • She has her nose so high in the air she could drown in a rainstorm.
  • He thinks the sun comes up just to hear him crow.

(Most of these comments are made about women. Apparently, Southern men are not stuck up.)

Southern Expressions About Being Cheap:

  • He squeezes a quarter so tight the eagle screams.
  • He's tighter than a bull’s ass at fly time.
  • Tighter than a flea’s ass over a rain barrel.
  • He’s so cheap he wouldn’t give a nickel to see Jesus ridin’ a bicycle.

Southern Phrases About Being Broke or Poor:

  • Too poor to paint, too proud to whitewash.
  • I'm as poor as a church mouse.
  • I'm so poor I can't afford to pay attention.
  • He was so poor, he had a tumbleweed as a pet.
  • I couldn’t buy a hummingbird on a string for a nickel.
  • I’m so poor I couldn’t jump over a nickel to save a dime.
  • He doesn't have a pot to piss in or a window to throw it out of.

Too poor to paint, too proud to whitewash.
Too poor to paint, too proud to whitewash.

Dressed Too Scantily? They Will Say:

  • Those pants were so tight I could see her religion.
  • You're gonna have old and new-monia dressed like that!
  • Lawd, people will be able to see to Christmas!
  • Law, pull that down! We kin see clear to the promised land!

Southerners Experiencing a Drought Might Say:

  • It's so dry the trees are bribing the dogs.
  • I swan, you all musta pissed God off somehow. It’s drier than a popcorn fart ‘round these parts. (Translation: Ya got me... I don't know what a popcorn fart is!)

Confused? In the South, They Might Say:

  • He doesn't know whether to check his ass or scratch his watch.
  • He couldn't find his ass with both hands in his back pockets.
  • He's about as confused as a fart in a fan factory.
  • She's lost as last year's Easter egg.

(As we Yankees say, "These people don't know which way is up.")

Well, that just DILLS my PICKLE!
Well, that just DILLS my PICKLE!

Southerners Know Happiness When They See It:

  • He's as happy as if he had good sense.
  • Happier than ol' Blue layin' on the porch chewin' on a big ol' catfish head.
  • Happy as a dead pig in the sunshine. (Translation: Apparently pretty happy.)
  • Grinnin' like a possum eatin' a sweet tater.
  • Well that just dills my pickle.

Expressions About Laziness:

  • Won't hit a lick at a snake. (Translation: So lazy he wouldn’t chase a snake away.)
  • He's about as useful as a steering wheel on a mule.

Colloquialisms for Unmentionables:

"Over-the-shoulder boulder holders." (Translation: A very large bra.)

Over-the-shoulder boulder holder?
Over-the-shoulder boulder holder?

Irritation Brings Out Some Creative Southern Expressions:

  • She gets my goose.
  • He just makes my ass itch!
  • Yankees are like hemorrhoids: Pain in the butt when they come down and always a relief when they go back up.
  • That would make a bishop mad enough to kick in stained glass windows.
  • She could make a preacher cuss!
  • She could piss off the pope.
  • If you don't stop that crying, I'll give you something to cry about!
  • She could start an argument in an empty house.
  • He's about as useless as a screen door on a submarine/a trapdoor on a canoe.
  • That makes about as much sense as tits on a bull.
  • Quit goin' around your ass to get to your elbow.

Colorful Southern Expressions About Liars:

  • Don't piss on my leg and tell me it's rainin'!
  • Don't pee down my back and tell me it's raining.
  • That dog won't hunt.
  • You're lyin' like a no-legged dog!
  • If his lips's movin', he's lyin'.
  • You’d call an alligator a lizard.
  • That man is talking with his tongue out of his shoe.
  • He's as windy as a sack full of farts.

(The most creative expression about liars I've heard in the North is "Lying like a rug." Southerners have much more colorful ways of accusing a liar.)

Southernisms About Stupidity:

  • If that boy had an idea, it would die of loneliness.
  • The porch light's on, but no one's home.
  • He's only got one oar in the water.
  • If brains were leather, he wouldn't have enough to saddle a junebug.
  • He's so dumb, he could throw himself on the ground and miss.
  • He hasn't got the sense God gave a goose.
  • When the Lord was handin' out brains, that fool thought God said trains, and he passed 'cause he don't like to travel.
  • His brain rattles around like a BB in a boxcar.
  • There's a tree stump in a Louisiana swamp with a higher IQ.
  • So dumb he couldn't pour piss out of a boot with the instructions written on the heel.
  • He don't know s**t from shinola. (Now this one I've heard in New Jersey....)
  • If his brains were dynamite, he couldn’t blow his nose.

He is so dumb, he could throw himself on the ground and miss.
He is so dumb, he could throw himself on the ground and miss.

Surprised Southerners Might Come Out With This:

These are probably some of my very favorites!

  • Well butter my butt and call me a biscuit.
  • Well, slap my head and call me silly!
  • You little cotton-picker!

When Something Smells Really Bad, a Southerner Says:

  • He smelled bad enough to gag a maggot.
  • Something smells bad enough to knock a dog off a gut wagon.

If You Hear These Southern Expressions, You Better Watch Out:

Either somebody's in real trouble, or there's a fight brewing if you hear...

  • I'm gonna cut your tail!
  • I’m gonna jerk her bald!
  • Keep it up and I'll cancel your birth certificate.
  • I am going to jerk a knot in your tail.
  • You don’t know dip sh** from apple butter!
  • Me-n-you are gonna mix.
  • You don't watch out, I'm gonna cream yo' corn.
  • You better give your heart to Jesus, 'cause your butt is mine.
  • I'll slap you to sleep, then slap you for sleeping.
  • I’m gonna tan your hide.
  • I'll knock you into the middle of next week looking both ways for Sunday!
  • I'll knock you so hard you'll see tomorrow today.

I'm going to jerk a knot in your tail.
I'm going to jerk a knot in your tail.

Southern Expressions for Speed (Fast or Slow):

  • Faster than a one-legged man in a butt-kicking competition.
  • Faster than green grass through a goose.
  • Faster than a hot knife through butter.
  • Slower than a Sunday afternoon.
  • You took as long as a month of Sundays.
  • We're off like a herd of turtles.
  • He ran like a scalded haint. (I don't know what a "haint" is, but apparently a scalded one can run really fast!)
  • It happened faster than a knife fight in a phone booth.

Ugly or Looking Bad?

Now these are really unkind, but funny as heck!

  • He's so ugly, he didn't get hit with the ugly stick, he got whopped with the whole forest!
  • He fell out of the ugly tree and hit every branch on the way down.
  • So ugly she’d make a freight train take a dirt road.
  • So ugly he’d scare a buzzard off a gut pile.
  • She's so ugly I'd hire her to haunt a house!
  • If I had a dog as ugly as you, I'd shave his butt and make him walk backwards.
  • She is so ugly, her face would turn sweet milk to clabber.

When the ugliness is just temporary:

  • I feel like I've been chewed up and spit out.
  • I feel like I been 'et by a wolf and sh** over a cliff.
  • He looks like ten miles of bad road.
  • You look like you've been rode hard and put up wet!

When Southerners Are Well Fed, They Are:

  • Fat as a tick.

If he were an inch taller, he'd be round.
If he were an inch taller, he'd be round.

Southern Observations About Weight:

  • He's so skinny, if he stood sideways and stuck out his tongue, he'd look like a zipper.
  • She's so skinny, you can't even see her shadow.
  • She's spread out like a cold supper.
  • If he were an inch taller, he'd be round.

Of the Wealthy:

  • Sh**tin’ in high cotton.
  • He's richer'n Croesus.
  • He's so rich he buys a new boat when he gets the other one wet.

A Hungry Southerner Says:

  • I'm so hungry my belly thinks my throat's been cut.
  • I could eat the north end of a south-bound polecat.
  • I'm so hungry I could eat the north end of a south-bound goat.

Colorful Expressions About the Weather:

Like some of the other Southern phrases, a few of these might not be appropriate in mixed company.

  • Colder than a well digger's butt in January.
  • It was colder than a witch's tit in a brass bra.
  • That rain was a real frogwash.
  • It rained like a cow pissin' on a flat rock.
  • Hotter than blue blazes.
  • It's colder than a penguin's balls.
  • It’s hotter than two rabbits screwin’ in a wool sock!
  • It's cold enough to freeze the balls off a pool table.
  • Colder than a banker's heart on foreclosure day at the widows' and orphans' home.
  • It's been hotter'n a goat's butt in a pepper patch.
  • It's cold enough to freeze the tit off a frog.
  • It is hotter than a jalapeño's coochie.

All-Purpose Southern Expressions We Couldn't Do Without:

  • Y'all.
  • All y'all.
  • Down yonder.
  • Bless your pea-pickin' little heart!
  • Kiss my go-to-hell.

  • I wouldn't walk across the street to piss on him if he was on fire.
  • If you can't run with the big dogs, stay under the porch.
  • Why so sad? Did Chevrolet stop makin’ trucks?
  • Deep in the South where sushi is still called bait.
  • He's about as useful as a screen door on a submarine.
  • That sticks in your throat like a hair in a biscuit.
  • You’re so fulla s**t your eyes are brown.
  • He was as nervous as a long-tailed cat in a roomful of rocking chairs.
  • He couldn't carry a tune if he had a bucket with a lid on it.

The Southern word for "sushi" is "bait."
The Southern word for "sushi" is "bait."

Southern Slang

Part of Speech
bread basket
His bread basket is bigger than a bread basket, if you know what I mean.
HIs britches are so tight they make his legs look like hot dogs.
askew or awry; cockeyed
The storm knocked the clothes on the clothesline all cattywampus!
go get/good looking
I'm gonna fetch me the most fetching filly I can find.
getting ready
I'm fixin' to fix the porch door after I finish this sweet tea.
gussied up
dressed up; fancy
She's so gussied up you'd think it was a beauty contest.
verb or noun
hunger or yearning
I have a hankerin' for biscuits and gravy.
fancy, pompous, or pretentious
He's so highfalutin' he thinks his sh*t tastes like sherbert.
a small amount
I can't hear a lick with all this hooplah.
adjective or verb
fiddling, puttering, or pottering around
Quit your piddlin' and get to work!
entirely, completely
She's plumb crazy.
a disturbance or commotion
He made such a ruckus he woke the possums.
run away; hurry
You better skedaddle before you get caught!
haughty, arrogant
He's so uppity he deserves a PhD in snobbery.
whip or beat
I'm gonna whup you where the sun don't shine!

Southern Expression Poll

How many of these southern sayings have you heard?

See results
Did she just fall off the turnip truck?
Did she just fall off the turnip truck?

That's All She Wrote...

Well, that's all she wrote, y'all. I've looked all over hell and half of Georgia to find the best and funniest Southern sayings for all y'all, and I sure hope they tickled you as much as they tickled me.

And if y'all have any more fine Southern sayings, well, bless yer pea pickin' hearts, just let 'er rip, tater chip, and jot them down in the comments section below. I'm just happier than a dead pig in sunshine to have all y'all visiting me here today and taking the time to sit awhile and share your thoughts.

If you enjoyed this, be sure to visit "More Funny Southern Sayings and Southernisms from Readers."

Copyright ©2015 Stephanie Henkel

Yankees just can't pass for Southerners!

Well, we try...
Well, we try... | Source


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    • Stephanie Henkel profile image

      Stephanie Henkel 40 hours ago from USA

      Sigh...perhaps, but my understanding is that farmers of any race would pick cotton for a living in the southern states. I hope this isn't taken as a racial slur.

    • profile image

      Andi85 2 days ago

      Just a friendly note: it seems as though the expression 'cotton pickin' may have it's roots in slavery and thus seen as a racial slur.

    • profile image

      Kissing Kate 7 days ago

      Not my circus, Not my Monkeys

      (You say when you are tried of being around people or other people's children)

    • profile image

      Andy loves it 7 days ago

      For real

    • profile image

      Western North Carolina 8 days ago

      Dumber than a bag of hair

      Ugly as ten days of bad weather

      Ugly as five miles of bombed out run way

      He lies when the truth would be as good

      Caniption fit

      Finer than frog hair

      Didn’t know whether to s**t or wind his watch

      Buying a pig in a poke

      Rare as chicken lips

      A couple bricks shy of a load

      Too dumb to come in out of a shower of s**t

      Those pants fit her like two coats of Kentone

      Common as crap on a boot

      Madder than a wet hen

      That dog won’t hunt

      It’s time to piss on the fire and call in the dogs

      I don’t trust him as far as I can throw him

      Beat him like a stepchild

      Useless as an egg sucking dog

      Sweating like a whore in church

      If you’re feeling froggy then jump

    • profile image

      Phillip Ball 9 days ago

      Yes, a haint is a ghost, but it also describes a woman who wears too much makeup. She has so much powder on her face, she looks pale like a ghost. If you've had too much to eat, you are "too stuffed to jump". A booger is an unknown terror, as in "I wouldn't go in them dark woods, a booger might get me". I enjoyed your article. Thanks.

    • profile image

      BonRay 2 weeks ago

      I know some women say I'm going to drain my lily, for going to the bathroom. I'll be back, I gotta drain my lily.

    • profile image

      Rj 2 weeks ago

      nice, even though i haven't heard all of thees, i've heard quite a few (being southern and all that jazz) its hard to find blogs that give you terms southerners actually use. bravo!

    • profile image

      Felmlee 2 weeks ago

      Its raining so hard the frogs are lined up on the bank with raincoats on

    • profile image

      Dee 2 weeks ago

      I loved your article. I'm not from the south personally but I liked all of the saying. I thought that some where really fun and even true to me.

    • profile image

      Edward 3 weeks ago

      Friends of mine in the South say, "I'm touchin' cotton," when they have to go to the bathroom.

    • profile image

      jerry james from south georgia 4 weeks ago

      don't never insult a southern man unless you're ready to fight him.

    • profile image

      Robert F. Royce Deep Yankee 5 weeks ago

      You missed a good one. "There's no education in the second kick of a mule."

    • profile image

      ED 5 weeks ago

      He's as useless as tits on a borehog! She's as nervous as a whore in church!

    • Stephanie Henkel profile image

      Stephanie Henkel 6 weeks ago from USA

      Thanks you, Saige! These are some terrific new (to me) sayings. I'll be adding them to my next list!

    • profile image

      Saige 7 weeks ago

      I really like your article! I'm from the south.. Here are some more sayings I heard growing up and still hear today.


      *His brain is like a BB in a boxcar.

      *She's about as clever as the summer is cold.

      *If brains were dynamite, he couldn't get a lightning bug's ass to blink.

      *She puts the apple in his eye and the pea in his brain. (he's a fool in love)


      *Well, don't that just throw your hat in the crick? (mild disappointment)

      *That's the whole hushpuppy? (that's all?)

      *Well, I'll be the son of a biscuit!

      *Aw shucks, (verbally blushing) or, well shucks! (almost cussing)

      Describing folks:

      *He's slicker than a greased pig. (he's a sidewinder)

      *She's the run of rumor mill. (she's a gossip)

      *He thinks he's the cream of the crop, but everyone and their uncle knows he ain't green beans. (he's a bluffing braggart)

      *She's madder than a wet hen.

      *She's madder than a rattler in a rainstorm.

      *She's madder than a twister in a cabbage patch.

      *You no account, cotton pickin, yellow bellied fool!

      (you low-down coward)

      *I bet that boy's got a butt full of buckshot. (he's a scoundrel)

      *He's got a chest full of woodpeckers. (he's nervous, his heart is beating faster than a jack rabbit)

      *He's as stubborn as a mule and tougher than a goat. (he's hard-headed)

      *God bless her, 'cus Lord knows I can't. (I'm at my wits end with her)

      *I've known him since he was knee-high to a grasshopper/boll weevil. (I've known him all his life)

      *Shuck 'n jive (a plot to fool somebody)

      *She wound up on the wrong side of the briar patch. (her shuck 'n jive backfired)

      *Juke 'n jive (dance and drink)

      *She's been bar hoppin' like a cooped up cricket/kangaroo. (she's been jukin' 'n jivin' a mite too much)

      *Get your tongue untied before you hang yourself with it. (Quit rambling/start explaining before you say too much)

      *We gotta be slyer than a fox in a hen house. (we need to be sneaky)

      *We gotta run faster than a fox from a hen house. (we got busted)

      *Happy as an ant at a church picnic.


    • profile image

      Angela 2 months ago

      I love this

    • profile image

      Stephanie 2 months ago


      He's saw'n logs

      Raising the rafters.

      (better hurry up)

      He needs to S*** or get off the pot!

      (been in the bathroom to long)

      Think the polecat got him.

    • Stephanie Henkel profile image

      Stephanie Henkel 2 months ago from USA

      Thanks for a few new ones, Glenn. I like the one about trying to put frogs in a wheelbarrow!

    • profile image

      Glenn 2 months ago

      Can't stop ya from doing it but I'll break ya of the habit; implies you better quit while you are ahead.

      Happier than a puppy with three tails; Implies so excited I can't stand it

      Does a fat baby fart? Implies yes

      This is worse than trying to put frogs in a wheelbarrow; implies mass confusion

      Your about as smart as a bucket of dirt; implies pure stupidity

    • profile image

      Andi85 2 months ago

      Nervous as a long tailed cat in a room fulla rockin chairs

      I'll be there in two shakes of a bee's knee

      Busier than a Waffle House fly

      So few teeth he could brush with a corn cob

      Purtier'n may-nayse oozin outta a Spam sandwich

    • Stephanie Henkel profile image

      Stephanie Henkel 2 months ago from USA

      MarkSiebert - I'm so glad that Google brought you here. Hope you enjoyed my article, and thanks for adding your saying.

    • profile image

      MarkSiebert 2 months ago

      Funniest one I ever come across was

      "(she was)...shakin' like a dog passin' a peach pit. " It was in an old book of collected sayings that I would love to find. (Actualy it was whilst searchin' fer it that I come across this here site. Thanks, Google fer helpin' the author share! :-)

    • Stephanie Henkel profile image

      Stephanie Henkel 3 months ago from USA

      Ruth Ann, Thanks for the laugh! I need to remember that one as there are so many times it would be appropriate!

    • Stephanie Henkel profile image

      Stephanie Henkel 3 months ago from USA

      Now there's a new one, Btb31!

    • profile image

      Ruth Ann 3 months ago

      I haven't read one of my favorites from my Texan mom. She said, "You need to pull your head out before you sit down and break your neck."

    • profile image

      Btb31 3 months ago

      Harder than nailin a poached egg to a tree

      You're not the only pig in the poke

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      mrs.moleman 3 months ago

      A haint is a ghost. Most old southern homes look haunted or are haunted and traditionally have a blue porches. That color is called 'haint blue'.


      Kill em' hammer dead.

      She's crazy as a moon bat, or she's moon bat.

      Crazy as a runt over dog.

      Stuck together like a couple of lovebugs.

      Quit your hollerin'.

      Happier than a pig in shit.

    • Stephanie Henkel profile image

      Stephanie Henkel 4 months ago from USA

      Thanks so much Whitney Overstreet! You made my day! :)

    • profile image

      Whitney Overstreet 4 months ago

      I am GA born and raised and now raising my own here still. This was one of the funniest blogs I've ever read! And so true! Love it!

    • Larry Slawson profile image

      Larry Slawson 4 months ago from North Carolina

      Haha, I really enjoyed your article! :) Thanks for sharing.

    • profile image

      Jean McDermott 4 months ago

      I really enjoyed this article. My folks are from AL and TN. I grew up with these expressions and use some of them myself.

    • profile image

      musclemutt 5 months ago

      Believers in voodoo keep spirits away by painting the house haint blue, a color sort of like electric blue.

      And "Those pants were so tight I could see her religion," only makes sense if you say it about a man, religion traditionally being associated with circumcision in earlier times.

      My friend Kenny had a load of sayings from up in the mountains, like "easier than pullin a greased string through a goose."

    • profile image

      gerrielynn 5 months ago

      Cute! This brought plenty of smiles and even a laugh or two! Thanks for the fun article!

    • profile image

      Carol Romine 5 months ago

      "He wouldn't be happy if He was hung with a silk rope." A very unhappy fellow! :)

    • Stephanie Henkel profile image

      Stephanie Henkel 7 months ago from USA

      Talmage Jordan - Never heard it before, but I like that one!

    • profile image

      Talmage Jordan 7 months ago

      Mamaw (Grandmother) Jordan used to say, "He's knocking lost john."...sleeping!

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      Ann Plicque 8 months ago

      Way down yonder in New Orleans, we say catty-cornered to mean diagonally across from a point. Never heard of any kind of wumpus. "That dog won't hunt," doesn't point out a liar, necessarily, but says a statement is a lie. There is a difference. But being a big port, we get people from all over. So our southernisms may be tainted. I've heard dumb as a bag of hammers, but have no idea where it came from. I use it all the time because the visual in my mind is hilarious. Version I heard is "rode hard and hung up wet," not to mean "ugly," but to mean beat up and worn out. Usually refers to cars and people. Though it is correct English word, based on middle English stave, meaning something about a boat repair, I also never heard, I'm stoved up, as meaning I'm too worn out, sore and beat up from overdoing something, I've gotta rest. I did hear from someone who grew up in Lafayette with Jackson, Miss. ties "He's like bad grass, you just can't kill him." We were talking on the phone and I told him to shut up while I laughed for a solid three or four minutes. Then he said, real coolly, "You liked that, didn't ya." Which made me laugh hard again. And if it was never an expression, "You can't fix stupid," should be. Ron White is great.

    • Stephanie Henkel profile image

      Stephanie Henkel 9 months ago from USA

      Joyce Bragg Cosra - That's a new saying! Thanks!

    • profile image

      Joyce Bragg Cosra 9 months ago

      My Mother use to say to my sister and me when it was time to go to bed, "It is time to get ready to go to "Miss White's Party" . In other words, it is time to go to bed and get between the white sheets.

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      SouthernBelle 9 months ago

      A 'haint' is a ghost. If you had read 'To Kill A mockingbird' in high school like we have to down here, you woulda known that!

      My momma also would say, when threatening to tan my hide, 'You'll be eatin' off the mantle for a week!'

      I am so blessed to have lived in the South all my life, so I knew just about all of those sayings!

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      Aristotelis Katsaros 9 months ago

      Awesome. Didn't know there was so many sayings in the south!

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      ButterBean 9 months ago

      She'd talk water uphill. I've eat so much chicken I'm fartin' feathers. It's fixin' to come a toad-strangler. Might as well stay--it's too wet to plow. Sloppy as watermelon juice in a bellybutton. He ain't got backin' up sense. Hide 'n watch. Jesus H. Christ in a sidecar... She's so purty I could eat the corn outta her $hit. She's so skinny she'd have to straddle the drain to keep from being sucked clean through. His butter's done gone and slipped off his biscuit. I could sop her UP with a biscuit. I could eat you with a spoon and not miss a drop. If I do, there'll be a band before me playin' Who the Hell'da Thought It. If I am there'll be a star in the far east. He could put his shoes under my bed any day of the week and twice on Sunday. Now...ya just gone done and done it, ain'tcha? You're givin' me a case of the red ass. I'm so skeerd my ass is makin' buttonholes. Sew him up in the bed sheet and beat him with a broom. Drunker 'n Cootie Brown. Meaner 'n a snake. Crazier than bat $hit. Ugly as a mud fence. Lord love a duck. Let's put on the dawg! That's larapin' good. (Criteria for "larapin" according to my MIL is that it must contain at least 2 of 3 ingredients: flour, sugar, or butter, and all 3 is guaranteed). Full as a fat tick on a fat dawg.

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      William E. Lee 10 months ago

      In the line "He ran like a scalded haint." the "Haint" is a 'hen'

      Howver in the Southern Appalacian Mountain parts it can be a 'haunt.'

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      Stephanie Henkel 10 months ago from USA

      Thanks, Nathan, for your very cute comments! I'm so happy that my article made you feel finer than a frog's hair split four ways! LOL!

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      Nathan 10 months ago

      Well, butter my biscuit, you did a good job. I use some of these with my girlfriend who is from Chicago and it makes her madder than a midget with a yo-yo. Sometimes I think she couldn't find her way out of a paper bag. This article makes me feel finer than frog hairs split four ways. Another one you missed when someone asks you if you like something, and you reply with, "Is a bullfrog water-proof?" Also, she's so sour if she smiled her face milk would curdle.

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      Amy 10 months ago

      Not sure if this page is still monitored, but I came across it while searching for a fun way to tell my friends that I'm super happy today. I'm a southern girl, so it was like pulling teeth to find a saying that we don't already use. But non the less I got a good chuckle reading through the list.

      Anyway, I have a saying that didn't see listed about. It's a way of expressing how nervous you feel.

      "She's as jumpy as a virgin at a prison rodeo"... I nabbed that from an episode of Golden Girls. Blanche Deveroux said it. LOL!!!

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      Flora C Rakes 11 months ago

      Thanks for a happy note in my day from a often homesick old Southerner.

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      Jim 11 months ago

      I just found this so I'm not sure if it's still monitored, but one of my mom's favorite saying about a neighbor who was very unfriendly:

      "She's so mean, she goes bear huntin' with a switch (tree branch used for giving your child a whoppin)

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      Spring 11 months ago

      Well I thank you hit the nail on the head I have heard and said so many of these since I was little

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      BODYLEVIVE 11 months ago from Alabama, USA

      I got a big kick out of this. I live in the south, Alabama. You;ve got some here I;ve never heard before, lol lol lol. I couldn't help but lol while I was reading this. Great job and I truly enjoyed reading and the lol.

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      India Ingle 12 months ago

      does anyone know " love you ottles and bootles?

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      Stephanie Henkel 12 months ago from USA

      Well, that certainly explains it, Gracie! But not a picture I really want to carry in my head! :)

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      Gracie 12 months ago

      The thing about being as happy as a dead pig in the sunshine is because when the sun heats up the dead pig's skin, it draws up a bit or shrinks up a bit making the pig's face look like it's smiling

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      Bob 13 months ago

      Full: My belly is as tight as a banjo string

      Faster than a scalded dawg

      Her taste is in her mouth

      Katy bar the door

      Mo' tea?

      Mawn back. (Directions to a driver in reverse)


      Wouldn't throw her out of bed unless she had a preference for the floor

      she is so pretty I'd eat the corn outa her sh*t

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      Kevin 13 months ago

      A "haint" Is a ghost.

      I'm a Virginia boy living in Louisiana. I love this list.

      Great list. A few seem more like someone's putting you on, but maybe it's just a regional thing within the south.

      Tan your hide and "I'll give you something to cry about" are not exclusive to the south. Brits and Midwesterners both say that. Or at least my in-laws and my Wisconsin born and bred grandmother say those.

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      Will 14 months ago

      Frog strangler= bad rain storm

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      Allen Rizzi 14 months ago

      Enjoyed this! We've heard most as transplants from Italy but I still can't get used to the word "impor-dand" - it must be very impor-dand in deed!

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      Stephanie Henkel 14 months ago from USA

      Jaycie, One of the things that most impressed me when we moved south was the very respectful way that children addressed adults. Our neighbor's little boy was taught from the time he could talk to say "yes, ma'am" and "yes, sir".

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      Jaycie Revels 14 months ago

      I live in South Carolina and I have literally heard 3/4 of these sayings growing up. Some that we use in my town are:

      Its hot as hell or Its hot as the devils balls.

      Crank the car up.

      Chunk the sticks over there.

      Imma kick you where the sun don't shine.

      Imma knock you to tomorrow.

      And everytime we're told to do something by adults or people older than us we always say yes/no ma'am and yes/no sir.

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      Stephanie Henkel 14 months ago from USA

      That's interesting, Peg Roach. I've only heard a similar saying from those of Irish descent.

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      Peg Roach 14 months ago

      Did anybody hear their old timers say "Well fath & begorra!" ???? I was raised in Memphis & in NE Arkansas. As I recall it was used as a term like "WELL how do you like that!" or "Well I'll be darned!" Thanks.... and by the way, I'm almost 80, so I doubt any young things have heard this!

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      Thomas Allen 15 months ago

      Seen most of these and use quite a few ( I live in Ky) raised in ky, born in Missouri, parents from southern Illinois. My dad used to say

      Shape up or ship out

      It's better than a poke in the eye with a sharp stick

      My wife is from eastern ky and her and her family use a few I didn't see mentioned.

      Ugly as a mud fence

      Sleepy as a hound dog

      Rough as a cobb

      Messy as a soup sandwich

      Here are a few more,

      Drunk as a three eyed goat

      Dumb as a box of rocks

      That boys got two brain cells on one's on life support.

      Sober as a judge

      Hotter than a two dollar pistol

      The word " count" used as a replacement for "good"

      Is that any count?

      Enjoyed the article and the comments

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      shanmarie 16 months ago

      One of the best compilations of sayings I've seen. I'm pretty stumped too about that popcorn fart. Of course, I didn't learn half of these sayings until after I moved to Texas.

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      Stephanie Henkel 16 months ago from USA

      Thanks, Terry! These sayings brought some vivid images to mind! :)

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      Terry Giboney 16 months ago

      As happy as a pig in slop!

      If you want to run with the big dogs, you have to learn to pee in tall grass!

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      Stephanie Henkel 16 months ago from USA

      I sure am, Paula! Thanks!

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      Jimbo 16 months ago

      My mom's favorite when she was fed up with someone,....." She,(he) just makes my ass tired!" Still hear it to this day seeing some people!! Ha!!

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      Paula 16 months ago

      Well, Hot Damn, Stephanie! I'll bet yer grinnin like a possum eatin a sweet tater! CONGRATULATIONS!! Paula

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      Leslie Whited 16 months ago

      Granny, how're U today?

      "Oh, fine, fine as fizzledust."

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      Stephanie Henkel 16 months ago from USA

      Bravewarrior - Thanks so much! I was so honored and excited to see my name among the Hubbie Award winners!

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      Shauna L Bowling 16 months ago from Central Florida

      Congratulations on your 2016 Hubbie Award for this article, Stephanie! This hub is a hoot!

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      Stephanie Henkel 16 months ago from USA

      Farmfaerie - Thank you for your lovely note. As a Yankee, I know I don't clearly get Southern grammar and contractions. Your explanation is wonderful, and I'm sure that going back home to West Virginia and hearing the dialect and Southern sayings is like having Grandma's comfort food. There's no place like home!

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      Farmfaerie 16 months ago

      I enjoyed your listing of the language I grew up listening to and still use today. One that my older brother used on me when I was little & he wanted to tease me was, "you could puke a buzzard off a gut wagon." I imagine that would take something truly offensive! My favorite saying from my grandfather was, "you're slower than fog off sh#!"

      All sayings have to be imagined significantly shorter, having most of the "g's" removed. Words like "you're" are tightened up to become just "ur." There are also the fun grammatical games we play by making our own conjunctions, such as "sloer'n" in place of "slower than."

      I can certainly appreciate good grammar and am a personal fan of the Oxford comma, but when I go back home to West Virginia, I can drop all the trappings of proper pronunciation, have a glass of sweet tea, and relax into that southern rhythm of speech that is so familiar.

      Thanks again for walk down memory lane.

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      Stephanie Henkel 16 months ago from USA

      Thank you, Michelle, for some cute new Southern sayings from your Gran! I will definitely have to add these to my collection!

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      Michelle 16 months ago

      Hahaha... Thank you for the laughs! My Gran is from the South and I have grown up hearing her colorful witticisms and a few I've had to think over to figure them out. one of my favorites she uses is for someone without a lick of sense... "He has less sense than you could slap on a gnats a$$ with a butter paddle!" Or someone not worth your time, "He's nothing but a facified fart!", which on occasion has been followed with the prior comment! Oh, the side-splittin' laughs we've had.

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      Hanns 17 months ago

      My Pappy used this expression when talking to women: She's more purty then a little red wagon teeter totering up a crooked hill!

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      Before you were born 17 months ago

      I used to hear,

      That was before the train whistled for you

      You we're still in the cabbage patch and hadn't been picked yet.

      I am from the south but my family was USA BILINGUAL. Arkansas and Illinois then me Mississippi. I would love to know some more of this "before you were born " colloquialisms. Any idea what part of the country the two I mentioned are from?

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      Marilyn Combs 18 months ago

      My dad's been gone many years, and was a mid-west kid (Neraska), making his home in Montana. I have no idea where his saying came from, but in talking about a skiff of snow while visiting OR, yeaars ago, he said, "This snow doesn't amount to a pinch of powdered knat s**t!" (translation: very little snow). Thanks for the belly laughs!

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      Harley 18 months ago

      A haint is a spook or a ghost. Just so ya know ;) great collection!

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      JM 18 months ago

      My North Carolina-born g-ma told me the neighbor kid was "jus down the road a fur piece." Never did find her.

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      David Meek 19 months ago

      "Lord willing, and the crick don't rise!"

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      Katie Roe Thomas 20 months ago

      My husband and I've lived in Georgia all our lives. My kids are named Bubba, Jack Earl, and Georgia Rose. My gran-mamma used to tell yankees who had their kids below the Mason Dixin line, and they tried to call them "southerns". " Just cause your cat has kittens in the oven that don't make um biscuits!!!"

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      The Stages Of ME 21 months ago

      Love the picture of you on your Hub. I have lived in the North and the South, as a girl from PA. that married a Texan. Needless to say, I thoroughly enjoyed your hub. I had quite the giggle as I read.

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      Amber Lockheart 21 months ago

      this is hilarious. When I first moved to the south, I have to admit that I was confused by a lot of what I call ramblings.

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      Stephanie Henkel 22 months ago from USA

      Thank you for your kind words, Rolly. So many of these saying make me smile, too. I'm glad you enjoyed my hub!

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      Rolly A Chabot 22 months ago from Alberta Canada

      Hi Stephanie Henkel... This had me rolling in laughter. I have lived in Canada the better part of my life, though I had opportunity to work and travel in the south. It was there I needed to retune my ears. Love many of those sayings, after a short while I found I fell right into it... Great post.

      Hugs from Canada

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      Catherine Mostly 22 months ago from Seattle, WA - USA - The WORLD

      What an adorable hub!! Really... You have not lived until you listen to Southern Folks talk to each other live and in-person. The movies don't do this creative version of our language justice, LoL!

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      Steph gauntt 24 months ago

      When talking of prices..."higher than a cat's back".

      When nervous... "Nervous as a long-tailed cat in a room full of rocking chairs".

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      Doretta Jacobs 2 years ago

      Stupidity........ He's elevator does not go all the way to the top or his pack of peanut is not full..................and he/she is dumber than a sack of rocks

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      Doretta jacobs 2 years ago

      You slower than Molasses on a cold winter morning

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      Andrew Lawson 2 years ago from Knoxville, TN

      I was surprised when a friend from Ohio was confused that I was, "Fixin' to leave." I didn't really think anything of it. We are always fixin' to do stuff.

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      Cee-Jay Aurinko 2 years ago from Cape Town, South Africa

      I had a good laugh reading this Stephanie. Great post!

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      haint 2 years ago

      My southern mother said a " haint" is a ghost. Most likely a generational miss pronunciation of " saint" , " haunting saint" or spirit.

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      Samantha Ratliff 2 years ago from Mississipi

      Sad to say but yes us southerners are very grammatically ignant lol

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      Stephanie Henkel 2 years ago from USA

      MyMastiffPuppies - So glad you got a few smiles out of this hub. Thanks for reading and commenting!

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      MyMastiffPuppies 2 years ago

      Like music to my ears! Being from the south I have heard most of these although I will admit there were a few new ones I missed somewhere along the way. Excellent job on making it funny and carrying me down memory lane.

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      Stephanie Henkel 2 years ago from USA

      Jodah - That's interesting! Perhaps some of those common sayings go back much farther than we think? Thanks for stopping by to read and comment!

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      John Hansen 2 years ago from Queensland Australia

      Well Stephanie, the funny thing is I am from Australia and we use a hell of a lot of these sayings here..I guess we are down south though...way down south. Probably at least one or two of the sayings from each category are used here. We must have a lot in common with the Southern US states. Very funny hub though. I enjoyed the read.

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      Anne 2 years ago from Spain

      Some of these sayings are used in England too (but not many) Running round like a headless chicken or a scalded cock for instance. I love to hear this kind of talk on some of the TV shows I watch, say yes to the dress has me in stitches. Great hub BTW but for some reason I am unable to vote it up etc, do they still have this facility on HP?