‘What Does It Mean’ Monday #4 “Dead on Time”

I’m squeezing this one in tonight. Before the witching hour begins.

Have you heard that one before? About that freaky time between midnight and 3am where spooky things and odd disturbances are more likely to occur? Well I’ve got another one for you. Because I want to break down the above post title, but also, I am going to throw in my own interpretation if you will allow me to.

Dead on Time. Literally we are talking about ‘time.’ But why do people get all morbid and say “dead on”?

Well the “dead on” part means literally – “absolutely”

“precisely”

“exactly.”

Combine them and you get the meaning “precisely on time.”

The word “dead” on its own finds its way into other phrases. Things like:

Dead still

Dead quiet

Dead serious

Dead drunk

What can we take from these?

Well, the dead are still

The dead, are quiet

Death, is serious.

And if you get too drunk, you can be mistaken for dead

But, what about that phrase I mentioned, “dead on time.”

Sure, it means exactly on time.

But I am about to go further and I’ll apologise right now for getting so morbid on you.

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Photo by Ahmad Ossayli on Unsplash

Many years ago I wrote a blog post called “Dead on Time.” It followed 3 funerals I attended in a matter of weeks. It made me think a lot, and I came to reflect on some similarities.

I believe dead on time is dual in its meanings. It has another one.

The living are late. And the dead can’t wait.

The funerals I’ve been to always run to time. There is no one living to hold the proceedings up. A wedding will have a bride whose hair didn’t go to plan, a nervous groom pacing the floor at his parents home, but meanwhile, at a funeral…

Sadly, all is said and done.

And though those who have passed may be on their way to another realm, another world, there is nothing to stop them on their journey…

And therefore they are dead on time.

Right? Wrong? Or so, so wrong?

Is there a phrase or quote you want me to investigate?

Let me know, and I’ll give it a go!

‘What Does It Mean?’ Monday #3 “Easy peasy pumpkin easy”

I have only ever known it as ‘pumpkin easy.’ But my daughter insists, every time I say it this way, that it is in fact – “lemon squeezy!”

I honestly thought it was her stubborn nature as she often proves herself to be 6, going on 17 and all… until I did this google search…

“EASY PEASY…”

And the “lemon squeezy” result came up far more times than my “pumpkin easy” preference did!

It must be a generational thing. Hubbie too finished my testing ‘easy peasy’ opener with –

PUMPKIN EASY.

Ok, so besides who says it what way, what does it actually mean?

Simple. Like literally. It means super easy or extremely simple.

“See, we fold this here and there you go! Easy peasy pumpkin easy.”

“We turn right into this street and it’s there – easy peasy lemon squeezy!”

The original term is easy peasy. Common add ons can be:

Pumpkin easy, or

Lemon squeezy, or even

Japanese-y!

WHAT?!

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Photo by Orlova Maria on Unsplash

The latter part of the sentence contains playful words added on perhaps for the fact that it is often used in the company of children (hence my almost everyday use of it). It is an example of a rhyming duplication… think other examples like teenie-weenie, and super-duper.

The term ‘easy peasy’ was originally used in the 1940 American film called The Long Voyage Home. We can only guess at the lemon squeezy addition, with some believing it goes back to a British commerical for soap in the 50s-60s, where the slogan used was “easy peasy lemon squeezy” to promote its lemon-scented dish soap called “Sqezy” (pronounced squeezy).

America’s version was ‘easy as pie,’ used as far back as from 1976, but we can still see that the British term was in use much further back than when the US one arrived on the scene.

I for one, have no idea where the pumpkin came in… only to assume that it may have digressed from the ‘easy as pie’ expression, and someone thought that pumpkins (and their pies!) were easy… hence ‘easy peasy pumpkin easy’?

As for the ‘Japanese-y’ addition… a few sources cite that it comes from a silly childhood rhyme:

“Easy peasy Japanese-y

Wash your hair in lemon squeezy!”

Why I never. I can imagine there was more rhyming and schoolyard nonsense attributed to this version rather than a downright racial slur… but fair to say I will still be using the orange vegetable version thank you very much!

Do you sayeasy peasy”? Which version do you use?

Is there a phrase or quote you want me to investigate?

Let me know, and I’ll give it a go!

 

Baby girl says the darndest things #6

I have the most interesting conversations with baby girl, who is 6 going on 17.

She knows everything, and expects me to read her mind.

This from a while ago.

It is morning.

 

“Honey, why was your door open this morning? Did you open it?”

“Yes.”

“You opened it and then went back to sleep?”

“I had to go toilet.”

“Did you go?”

“No I was waiting for you.”

PAUSE. “Did you call me?”

Hands in air. “I was standing here waiting for you!” Indicates the door.

“Honey how can I help you when you don’t call me? I was sleeping.”

“Mama! You should have known!”

(Face palm).

“Ok, so did you go toilet then?”

“No.”

“Do you have to go now?”

“No.”

 

I give up. 🤯

 

‘What Does It Mean?’ Monday #2 “Don’t get your knickers in a knot”

The above phrase is also commonly referred to as –

“Don’t get your knickers in a twist.”

“Don’t get your panties in a knot”

“Don’t get your panties in a bunch.”

Collectively they all mean the same thing…

Don’t get too excited or upset, or

Calm/settle down.

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Photo by Fahad Waseem on Unsplash

There doesn’t appear to be a real definitive origin of the phrase, other than to say that the term “don’t get your knickers in a twist” appears to have come from Britain in the 70s, only to have moved along to the U.S and Australia and become their version of “don’t get your knickers in a knot.”

The term ‘knickers’ itself is a British one, and the phrase is primarily reserved for women and their lower apparel…

Although the first recorded literary mention seems to come from Wilbur Smith’s The Train from Katanga (1965) I have to quote the 1968 novel by Frank Norman, titled Barney Snip – Artist:

“Oh do stop it,” she gasped as their lips broke away from each other with a resounding plonk. “You’re getting my knickers in a knot!”

And that my friends, is an appropriate usage of the term ‘knickers in a knot’ don’t you think? 😉😂

(How’s about that ‘lips broke away … with a resounding plonk’! What is a plonk sound? How do lips parting, go plonk? Hmm). 🤔

Is there a phrase or quote you want me to investigate?

Let me know, and I’ll give it a go!

‘What Does It Mean?’ Monday #1 “Hold Your Horses”

Have you ever wondered at the term “hold your horses?” I say it a lot, primarily to baby girl being the impatient 6 year-old that she is, and to our cat Mister F, well because… he can’t wait for anything and meows incessantly when he wants something.

It makes simple sense if you stop to think about it. In a historical sense, it refers to keeping your horses or carriage from moving and holding them still, and this is interpreted in our every day speech to mean:

to not get ahead of ourselves

to not rush

to be careful, and

to not celebrate too early.

“Hold your horses, we’re not there yet.”

“Hold your horses, you don’t know what is around the bend.”

“Hold your horses, you haven’t won the game.”

“Hold your horses, have another think about what you just said…”

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Photo by Daniil Vnoutchkov on Unsplash

First said as “hold your hosses,” it became our modern day interpretation in references like from the magazine Chatelaine in 1939, with –

“Hold your horses, dear.”

Is there a phrase or quote you want me to investigate?

Let me know, and I’ll give it a go!