I Reckon I Was A Might Bit Bored

After I drug my nasty carcass through the shower a bit earlier I went out with a fresh cup of coffee to have a smoke.

Normally I take my phone with me and scroll through the news headlines to try and stay on top of the heap of bullshit the media is spoon feeding everyone and to see if anything important catches my eye.

Alas, things were looking pretty barren at the time.

Of course there are always the constant little ads and other completely useless little blurbs that pop up in that news feed , because Google.

I was just getting ready to shut the thing off when I saw this little quiz wanting to know if you knew how to speak “Appalachian English”.

Just so you know, I was born in Oakland California and have lived the entirety of my existence here on the Left Coast.

However, my Mom, Her Mom and her Dad, were all from the South and that side of the family can trace their roots all the way back to the first Revolutionary War. They were scattered all over, from Both Virginia’s to South East Georgia and from Kentucky/Missouri/Mississippi/ Tennessee to Louisiana and some even wound up in Texas.

So while being “From The South” doesn’t automatically equate being from Appalachia by any stretch of the imagination, there were plenty of ancestors that were from there back in the day and that whole culture kind of got mixed in with what culminated in my Grandparents generation. I have actually been back across much of the South a couple of times when I was much younger and absolutely loved it.

One such trip to Arkansas* and those parts involved a nice long drive back up in the hills of the Ozarks to visit my Grandfather’s Aunt I do believe it was. This was in 1976 so things are a bit fuzzy. However, I vividly remember visiting this old woman who was kin and lived all by herself in a tiny little house with no running water and no bathroom. There was one bare light bulb hanging out of the ceiling in her front room that had a pull string on it and there were newspapers stacked up all over the place. The land she lived on though! I’d give my right nut to call that my own.

40 acres of beautiful land with a big barn. She was a widow lady and even then was probably in her 70’s.

A true Ozark Mountain Hillbilly if there ever was one, she managed to draw water out of a hand pump in a well not too far from the front door and had grown kids who kept an eye on her. She literally could have stepped right out of the pages of one of the original FoxFire books.

Anyways, this is just background. I was raised by Southern Folk with roots in Appalachia at some point and that shit is in my DNA.

So I see this hokey little quiz wanting to basically know if I could speak Hillbilly and gave it a shot.

100% correct answers because it wasn’t that difficult of a challenge for me.

Pick you a Snowflake from anywhere around here though and it might as well be Martian.

I wasn’t real surprised , it’s like riding a bicycle. Appalachian English is it’s own dialect but enough of it got mixed in with how my Grandparents talked that I could have a conversation with a true Appalachian native and get by easily enough.

I’m sure there would be a few things get by me but I would pick up on the meaning by the context of the conversation.

I have had people down in California ask me where I was from before and when I tell them, they tell me I’m lying to them. They think I’m from Missouri or Kentucky and if I get to talking to anybody from the South for more than a few minutes, that drawl starts creeping in and pretty quick I sound like I really was born in Missouri with a healthy dose of Tennessee mixed in. It’s kind of weird but it never fails.

If that person happens to be female I just melt inside the minute she utters her first words. I  just love the way those Southern ladies talk and get to missing my Ma and Granny something fierce.

It’s funny but people that are born and raised in The South can tell  if someone else is from a different part of The South by their accent and tell you where they are from even.

People from Georgia have a different accent than people from Missouri or Kentucky etc.

Virginians are the easiest for me to pick out for some reason.

They tend to talk without moving their upper lip much.

Almost anybody raised on the West Coast can’t tell that difference between any of them, they just lump them all together.

 

 

  • I had originally written Tennessee instead of Arkansas because my memory of it is fuzzy but thankfully got called out on the fact that the Ozarks are nowhere near Tennessee by a comment below so I fixed it. We drove out of Pine Bluff Arkansas to go see her. I mistakenly remembered Pine Bluff being in Tennessee instead of Arkansas.

 

 

41 thoughts on “I Reckon I Was A Might Bit Bored

  1. An excellent story, Phil!
    One thing strikes me a tad odd though:

    The land she lived on though! I’d give my right nut to call that my own.

    What’s an old geezer’s right nut worth?
    Really that much??
    You should ask your wifely unit for an appraisal.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. As a native Tennesseean having lived at both ends of the state for 33 years, if you think the Ozarks are within 400 miles of East Tennessee, you may want to think again.

    Liked by 1 person

    • You are absolutely right. My mistake because of my fuzzy memory. We had relatives in Pine Bluff Arkansas that we were visiting when we took off to go see her.
      I had mistakenly remembered Pine Bluff being in Tennessee.
      I will fix that, thanks.

      Like

  3. I made 100, too. I was born in Atlanta, something I try to keep to myself here in Northeast Georgia, but I’m the product of a mixed marriage: my dad was from Southwest Georgia, and my mother was born in Northeast Georgia but grew up in Central Georgia below the Gnat Line. That is, you’ve come down off the Piedmont Plateau to where the gnats live..

    Like

    • You can tell them what are from below the gnat line from them what ain’t by the way they talk. Those that aren’t will continually try to brush the gnats away from their mouths and those that are just kinda blow them away with their breath as the words come out, without a break in their words.

      Like

      • Being an Atlanta Yankee, the gnats used to drive me crazy when we’d visit the relatives down around Bartow. Citronella helped some.

        Like

  4. I’m from SW PA and we used a lot of those terms here. I got 100% on the quiz, but I just guessed on the last one. Never heard that one before………..

    Like

        • Used to hail from S. E. Pa. myself. Washington County is on the other side of the state. If memory serves me I believe it’s south of Pittsburgh. Picked up a couple muzzies from a prison there to bring them back on attempted murder charge back when I used to work in that occupation. In the great white north now and no looking back. Oh, and I have one of those hand water pumps still on the property to get my drinking water from.

          Like

  5. I was born in Michigan, raised in Oregon and lived in Tennessee, Alabama and Georgia for a number of years and I got 100% too. I guess I am a damn Hillbilly redneck and damn proud of it.
    I am an American by Birth, Southern by the Grace of God… God Bless Dixie!

    Like

  6. Married in to an Appalachian family and lived out there in them hills for 17 years. Took the quiz and got a 100 in 15 seconds flat and I was born in California! They forgot my favorite, “Jeet?” – which means “have you eaten yet?”.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lol!
      I got The Kid and the Wifely Unit both with that one a couple weeks ago.
      After I finally had to explain it to them real slowly all I got in return was a couple of disgusted looks. Fuckin’ Yankees anyway.

      Like

      • Funny , over where you live they all sound like Yankees. Where I grew up in southern Idaho they all sound southern ( back then anywho )
        I moved from Idaho twenty three years ago to central Fladuh…
        Most times I get mistaken for a local

        Like

    • “Jeet?” – which means “have you eaten yet?”.

      Woody Allen used to have a routine where he complained about an anti-Semitic co-worker who was only pretending to be friendly. But YOU COULD TELL because co-worker was always saying stuff to him like, “Jew eat yet? Wanna go get lunch?” or “Jew pull a double shift last week? Make sure you get overtime for that, buddy!”

      Like

  7. If’n you’ve read any Mark Twain, you shoulda been able to get a high score. Same watching any old 30’s and 40’s movies.

    All of these words and phrases were common and simple to know.

    And, yes, 100%

    Like

  8. Born and raised in the Chicago area, and I got 100% ‘Course I’ve been in Houston for 17 years, and worked throughout the ‘mid-South’ region for years before that. The only one I didn’t actually know was the thiggywiggle whatsis for toys….

    n

    Like

  9. Hell, I am a kiwi and got 100%.
    Spent lots of time in the US.
    Sheep shearing in California and Helicopter flying in Alaska.

    Like

  10. I was born, raised, and live in Southeast, Texas. I was correct with all the answers.

    Considering I’m currently by the Blue Ridge Mountains in Virginia on business, and how I feel like I fit in, I’ve determined my heritage probably started here. That’s a good thing.

    Like

  11. I was born and raised in Philly, and I’m going to attribute part of my 100% score to what Beans said, and the other part of the score is because of my El Paso born and raised father.

    Like

  12. I was in Baton Rouge years ago on business. The hotel had breakfast, and it was full on. Grits, biscuits, gravy, the works. 2 fellers sitting at the next table are discussing the “gravy”. “Oh, this gravy is lumpy.” “And the lumps are hard, not very tasty.” I almost choked.

    As they were lining up behind me to pay, I told the sweet cashier that I knew I was in civilization when grits were served without asking. Those 2 went, “OH!”

    And the old Tetley tea commercial. She just about had me drooling by the end of it. She could have one tooth and stringy hair, and I’ll melt anyway. It’s a weakness, I tell ya!

    Like

  13. 100 Here as well. I am born and raised in Montana. But alot of troops i got a long the best in the Army were good ol’ boys. That and the fact that most of the Army bases are in the south.

    Like

  14. That quiz was laughable easy, 90% of the questions i went, “Huh? people don’t know the answer to this automatically”? It was that simple. Which means most snotflakes would get 20% or less, but that goes without saying.

    Mom was a Roanoke VA Southern Belle (finishing school, even!), dad was a Portland Oregon boy, they met and married in the Military before WWII. Lotsa cousins all over the country, and as an AF Braqt we traveled to and lived overseas for a spell, then Dad finally settled/retired in Spokane (Fairchild AFB. My wife, also an AF Brat, met me at Minot ND (!!) and we’ve been going strong for 46 years going on Eternity. She’s got so much Southern in her that her speech pattern starts to shift when we get NEAR the South, it’s funny to listen to. *snicker*

    Y’all come back now, heah?

    Like

  15. HELL YEAH 100% , no need to think about any of those answers … I was born /bred/ raised in Canada ( 1 hr North of Montreal ) spent enough time down in the good ole South with friends … I love being down south .. Many people up here tell me I talk like a Southerner … Dixie kid at heart .. Love the blog Sir .. You’re a must read everyday ,along with Kenny and a bunch of others y’all have in common with ..

    Like

  16. Blue Blazes indeed… What in ‘tar nation you on about?

    100, easy having grown up in Virginia and spent a lot of time up in Jerome, a small un-incorporated locale South-West of Front Royal whose main road ends at Doris’s farm. After that, you hike about 5 miles through GW Forest and you’re in West-by-God.

    When the pig iron industry dried up and the 5 furnaces in the valley shut down, that was the end of their economy. Except, of course, the Rocco chicken plant.

    Like

  17. Apparently I am ‘100% – You’re A TRUE Appalachian!”, despite living downunder, coming from the mother country and my only knowledge of the Ozarks is via the The Ozark Mountain Daredevils

    Like

  18. Well, yours truly scored 100% but I got an edge as *Memaw & Mama was born here in Chickenbone (our state capitol) SC and I’ve been here since self-deporting from Marxachusetts way back in ’90. It was a good move.

    *disclaimer: They were never referred to as that. Ever.

    Like

  19. You are correct about the different dialects and brogues. Alabama, like Mississippi and Georgia, is broken down into two main dialects. The northern half of the state speaks the “mountain dialect” while people below an imaginary line between Birmingham and Montgomery speaks the “planters dialect” (i.e. instead of pronouncing the word war they usually drag it out some saying woyah).
    Also, there are dialects that are very local. Where I was raised I could (and still can) pick up on someone who lives in a community less than two miles from where I was raised. These kinds of differences mainly apply to to people who were born and raised in these areas, though some transplants pick up and parrot the local brogues. Approximately thirty years ago, there was a kidnapping from the county directly south of where I live. After some time the FBI released to local media outlets a tape of the telephone call demanding ransom. The feds stated that their lingual specialist could say with 98% certainty that the caller was from one of three counties in northwest Alabama. After everything played out, they were exactly right. By the way I took the test and scored a 100.

    Like

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