Tag Archives: folk phrase

“Hotty Toddy” Ole Miss Greeting

--Informant Info--
Nationality: American
Age: 24
Occupation: Sale rep.
Residence: San Fransisco
Date of Performance/Collection: April 19, 2020
Primary Language: English
Other Language(s):

Main Piece: 

Informant: Hotty Toddy is a saying that represents an Ole Miss rebel. 

Interviewer: What does the phrase mean? 

Informant: Hotty Toddy is a rallying cry, an identifier as to who you are and who you support, it crosses boundaries in ways that only sports and the unconditional love of a team or a college can. If you say Hotty Toddy you are showing your support for the Ole Miss Rebel community

Interviewer: When did you first use or hear the phrase? Do you still use the phrase even though you are no longer a student at Ole Miss?

Informant: I heard the phrase when I first attended Ole Miss and started using it immediately and felt connected to the community. And yes of course! I scream hotty toddy when I am excited or cheering on or complimenting a friend. I will continue to use the phrase for the rest of my life!

Interviewer: When was the last time you said Hotty Toddy or encountered the phrase? 

Informant: Recently in NYC I heard a stranger yell “Hotty Toddy” my way when wearing an Ole Miss hat. I yelled it back and felt an immediate connection. This made the large city feel smaller because I knew my Ole Miss family extended to NYC as well. 

Background: The informant shares that she learned the saying from peers and word of mouth from her time studying at Ole Miss. She explains the phrase represents a community around the school. The phrase is used as a greeting. She used the phrase as a student and continues to use the phrase in different scenarios. 

Context: The information was collected between informant and interviewer as an interview recalling times the phrase was used. The informant is a recent graduate to Ole Miss and recalls using the phrase numerous times. 

Thoughts: This saying “Hotty Toddy” has varied meaning and is used in many different scenarios. The phrase is used as a greeting, cheer, or secret message. “Hot Toddy” has changed over time. The first documented evidence of the phrase (then written as “Heighty! Tighty!”) appeared in a November 19, 1926 copy of the student newspaper, The Mississippian. Although originated in sports, the saying has expanded beyond sports and campus connecting the Ole Miss community in weddings, funerals, on social media platforms, and every day life. 

“Zumped” Quarantine Folk Phrase

--Informant Info--
Nationality: American
Age: 22
Occupation: Student
Residence: New york City
Date of Performance/Collection: April 10, 2020
Primary Language: English
Other Language(s):

Main Piece: 

Informant- Last night I was zumped. My boyfriend and I hadn’t seen each other for a few weeks due to quarantine. He invited me to a zoom meeting last night and I was unsure what he needed. On the zoom he then explained that he was dumping me! Over zoom! 

Background: The informant recalls an interaction with her boyfriend where she was ‘zumped’. She used this word in a casual scenario combing the words zoom and dumped. This word and her phrasing poked fun at the odd scenario of being dumped through a video app. 

Context: The informant is a young adult, 22 years old and lives in New York City. Above are the words from the Informant using the phrase Zumped. She used this phrase in a casual conversation recalling the events from the night before. 

Thoughts: The combination of the word Zoom and Dumping is an interesting way for people to bring some humor to an odd scenario. This time of quarantine is very liminal, allowing for many new adaptations of folklore. This new phrase ‘zumping’ is popular because couples who can’t quarantine together are being forced to go their separate ways. This liminal time period has introduced many uncertainties and testing intimate relationships forcing them to communicate through zoom. 

“Yeki bood, yeki nabood”

--Informant Info--
Nationality: American
Age: 18
Occupation: Student & artist
Residence: Tucson, AZ & Los Angeles, CA (college)
Date of Performance/Collection: 4/22/2018
Primary Language: English
Other Language(s): Farsi (Persian)

My friend Panteha is of Iranian descent on her dad’s side. She recalls a phrase in Farsi that her dad would always use to begin stories or fairy tales he told her as a kid.

The phrase is, in the original Farsi:
یکی بود یکی نبود

It is transliterated as “Yeki bood yeki nabood,” which roughly translates to “once there was one and once there wasn’t one.” This phrase is used in essentially the same manner in which many english speakers use “once upon a time” to begin folk narratives, particularly tales. Although these phrases have different literal translations, they serve the same purpose: to establish the fantastical or fictional nature of a folk narrative.