Tag Archives: sayings


“You a scunner?”/”You’re a wee scunner!”

MAIN PIECE “You a scunner?”/”You’re a wee scunner!” “Scunner is like a bother, specifically like a kid or something.  I don’t know what came first, but I say “You a scunner?” and so do many people I know around here, but my friends in Edinburgh say “You’re a wee scunner!”  We use it to kind… Continue Reading »

“And That’s the Night That the Lights Went Out In Georgia”

MAIN PIECE “And that’s the night the lights went out in Georgia” “This is a saying that I’ve found is common among mothers and older Southern women.  When someone does something that will get them into massive trouble, other people will say, “And that’s the night the lights went out in Georgia.”  People use it… Continue Reading »

“I’ve Had The Radish”

Main piece: “I’ve had the radish” as a saying of exasperation and general exhaustion with someone or something. Background: My informant is a 49 year old woman living in Kansas City, Missouri. She grew up in Joplin but moved around during her 20s, living for some period in Philadelphia. There, she worked for a large… Continue Reading »

Step on a crack, and you will break your mother’s back.

Context The informant is a Chinese American. We were discussing interesting superstitions in Chinese or American cultures when she brought out this item. Content You’re not supposed to step on cracks in the floor. If you step on it, you’re going to break your mother’s back. And I think kids kinda play for fun with… Continue Reading »

“The Best Construction”

Context & Analysis The subject, my mother, and I were getting coffee for breakfast and I asked her if she could tell me some stories about her childhood. The subject’s father (who has recently passed away) was a history professor in the Midwest. The family moved frequently because of this, which made it difficult for… Continue Reading »