Memories of my Daddy - I added more to it like the day I got a whooping!
| Take a walk on My Daddy’s side. My Daddy talked country and I mean really country - hillbilly country, twang country. Ah, the stories he would tell of his childhood and they always started with “I tell you what, Gal” and ended with “I guarantee you that” sounding just like Festus Haggen from Gunsmoke. He always had one of his sayings for everything.
What the cat hair’s going on here = what’s happening
Higher than a cat’s back = cost so much you can’t afford it
Comin’ up a cloud = thunderstorm prediction
Got Fu’Fu’d = had a beauty shop appointment
Your hot water’s dun been cut off = parental form of punishment
Mark that down in your little daybook = don’t forget what I just told you
I tell you what = getting ready to start a conversation or end a conversation
Get a rise out of you = aggravate someone
Bull got out of the pin on that one = a child that doesn’t look like rest of
I guarantee you that = being honest; telling the truth
Payin’ for your raisin’ = having children of your own
By the tar = by the way
Hea! Hea! (said really fast) = oh, no, I farted
Bigger than a big eyed goose = pretty durn big
Illegal as a sick bird = akin the law
Let me tell you a little story – memories of my Daddy’s childhood
And I could go on and on because my Daddy talked just like that all the time. Growing up, I thought that my aunt’s name was Aunt Ader. It wasn’t until I was grown that I discovered her real name was Aunt Ada. That “er” instead of an “a” was his trademark – just like ider, jalapener. I guess I got that country talkin’ honest because I talk just like that, just like Granny on the Beverly Hillbillies. So when I auditioned for a play whose character talked like that I got the role – all I had to do was open my mouth and start talkin’ - you would have sworn up and down it was Granny reincarnated.
My Daddy used to rock back and forth in his rocker recliner, swinging a flystatter singing these little singlets over and over and over again that he made up like:
- “I’m a sorry ole man, I’m a sorry ole man.”
- “Rap-tapa-tap-tap, Rap-tapa-tap”
- “I’m a dirty ole man, I’m a dirty man, Dum-diddy-dum-diddy dum”
Speaking of flyswatters. Let me tell you a little story. When I was about 15, I wanted to go on this date with a guy named Jerry. Daddy, trust me? – no way! My cousin, Ellen, about my same age, was staying with us and Daddy said I could go if she went with us. Well, I had to find her a date too, ya know? Jerry and I found this GUY, the most lanky, redheaded, acne faced, UGLY boy to double date with us. She never forgave me for that, by the way. We all four told Daddy we were going to CHURCH and it was broad open daylight (how bad could it be?).
The highway patrol stopped us as we were rushing home – 2 hours late – and said, “Boys, I don’t know about you but I’d get these girls home – their daddy is waitin’ on ‘em.” The ole scaredy boys let us out halfway down the driveway and took off like a bat out of you know what. AND there was my Daddy, standing on the front porch, waving the flyswatter up and down – his facial expression changed from worry to rage in 0-30 seconds. I thought if I just let Ellen go FIRST, she would get the worst of it. She got the swatter part – I GOT THE WIRE!!! My Daddy only spanked me that one time but that was the hardest whooping that any kid had ever had – and I deserved ever bit of it, I guarantee you that!
My dear Daddy had great compassion but he wouldn’t baby me none a’toll but what he DID say always comforted me. Like he would say, “ Problems? You got Problems? Why, gal, problems build character.” I would always reply that if that’s so then I had more character in my big toe than anyone had in their entire body. Whenever I cried when I got hurt, he told that he had worse than that on the end of his NOSE. He would pull at ole snout and I would end up laughing instead of crying. That’s my Dad!
My Daddy had these wonderful nicknames for members of our family – my nickname was TOAD FROG. I got my nickname by hopping and skipping around him as he worked on the farm. I followed him around because I just knew he had wanted me to be a boy instead of this flip-tailed girly girl. When I was 6 years old we were out mending a fence and I fell back on a roll of barbed wire cutting my hand wide open. He jerked me up, slung me over his shoulder, and headed to the house, blood gushin’ everywhere. He told me I had no business being out there anyway being a girl and all. Then I explained that I thought he wanted me to be a “boy”. He stopped, held me up in the air, and said, “Oh, Gal, you’re the best little girl in all the land.” Those words still echo as I look at the scars on the palm of my hand.
I tell you what, if only I could hear my Daddy say those sayings now because he died in 1994. He raised me to be a compassionate and honest person even if it does sound country. Mark that down in your little daybook.
Until next time…..take a walk on My Daddy’s side.