It’s my father’s birthday this month. A WWII vet, he’ll turn 90 years old. To mark this entrance into a new decade, he’s decided it might be time to retire. Yes, you read that right. He’s still working, part-time, at his age. He also continues the habit of running every morning, Monday through Friday, and then completes a complicated array of calisthenics he learned during his years in the Navy. I could continue with all the things I admire most about him but, instead, I’m going to share my top two of his favorite sayings/teachings he’s shared with me through the years.
If you lie down with dogs you’re gonna come up with fleas.
You can make a pretty woman drunk, but you can’t make a drunk woman pretty
I love both of these sayings because, well, they’re true. My daddy also loves a good “cowboy” movie. A southern gentleman to the bone, he relates to the code of ethics and the way good always wins over evil. I especially love the cowboy slang in the movies. But I’ve always wondered, is it real? Where did all those terms come from, anyway? And, um, what do they mean? I went surfing on the web recently and found a great site that breaks down many of the most popular slang, phrases, etc.
Here are some of my favorite slang terms and their meanings.
Airin’ the lungs: a cowboy term for cussing.
Barrel Fever: a hangover
Prayer Book: a small packed of papers used to roll cigarettes (also called a bible)
John B.: a cowboy hat, named after John B. Stetson
Marble Orchard: a graveyard
Kick up a row: create a disturbance
Persuader: a gun
Pie eater: a country boy, a rustic
Sold His Saddle: disgraced