Many people, if speaking or writing today, will agonize for hours trying to find just the right word or phrase. This is totally uncalled for if one happens to be from, or a visitor in, the deep South. We simply don’t do things that way. In fact, there is very little that we agonize over – period.
We more or less take things as they come and let it go at that. In most cases, anyone that does use the correct words to define something is often considered “Quare” or “Biggity.” We know exactly what is meant by, “That doo-hickey what sits on top of th’ motor in my truck went bad.” (The truck needs a new carburetor). See how simple it is.
When one tells you that the “(air’s a-showing thru th’ rite back’un),” you instantly know that he is referring to; (Holes in the Tires of the Vehicle). Just stating facts without searching for the ideal description is one of the things that make for the colorful language that is found in the South.
While these descriptions may seem strange to some, they hold perfect meaning for most of us. “Busted my han’ wide open on a tarr arn when I’sa changing th’ back’un,” explains why the hand is bandaged.
These substitutions for correct speech are not used because of lack of knowledge in most cases. They are as much a part of the make-up of the area as is kudzu and sand-spurs. It would be an honor to be invited into one’s home to look at: “All then ‘Do Dads, th’ Wife found at th’ Flee Market”.
If “That thang whot sets on your Starter quit workin;” You can rest assured that the “Voltage Regulator”, will have to be replaced. And, you are in deep trouble if the ‘what-cha-ma-call-it,” is faulty at the same time. But, the surprise comes upon receiving your itemized bill for the repairs and find that the voltage regulator costs $12.95, the alternator $36.50 and the labor $5.00. You are told, “$54.45 jus ort ta do it.”
This is definitely not a result of being unaware of current labor costs. It is simply the way things are done in the South. We are completely happy with our laid-back style of living and our needs are not as great as our northern brothers, and we are glad to lend a helping hand.
As a rule, most people that visit here will return again and again and some even choose to make this their home. The slow pace and relaxed way of doing things have a way of attracting others whose desire is to escape the helter-skelter of larger, more populated areas and it is not long after making the move until they, themselves, are referring to things such as…”Doo-Dads,” “Thing-A-Ma-Jigs”, & “Doo-Hickeys”.