Written by Bill Waller. Mr. Waller is a author and contributor local blog, Southwest Georgia Politics. He enjoys writing, traveling, and researching history. He currently resides in Albany, Georgia.
It seems that Hollywood, especially reality TV shows, cannot get enough of all things southern! Sons of Guns, Call Of The Wild Man, Swamp People, Bayou Billionaires, My Big Fat Redneck Vacation, Moonshiners, are all shows about us unique southern people. Some of those shows are less than flattering towards us, but we have captured the interests of television producers none the less.
One of the things that make the south so unique is our way of talking. The southern accent sets us apart from the rest of the nation. I recently read a news article that said the new Apple’s Siri, which responds to voice commands, cannot figure out the southern accent. Siri allows a person to operate their iPhone using his or her voice. (Honestly, sometimes I think that technology is becoming a bit too spooky, but that is for another article.) Siri does not speak Southernese, and yet they call it a smart phone? Hmm… Apple uses a song from Albany’s own Ray Charles in their official commercial for Siri, but it is unlikely that Siri would be able to understand Ray’s voice. Ain’t that the berries?
There are various expressions that used to be part of everyday speech here in the south. With so many outside influences on the southern culture today such as television, much of that is fading away. Hold on to your hats now y’all because I’m fixin’ to tell you some!
I did some work with an older gentleman during the summer last year who would instruct me to “…grab that board over yonder and slide it in my direction just a scosher tad.” Now, every self respecting Southerner knows the difference between a scosh, a scosher tad, a smidgen, and just a tad. For our northern neighbors, a tad is a small, almost insignificant amount, a smidgen is less than that, a scosher tad is really quite small, and a scosh is the smallest of all.
One day I asked when we were going to tackle a project around the house, and the old man said that we would get on it directly. That of course meant that we would work on it when we got around to it, but it would likely be sooner rather than later. He has some health issues and on an average day when I asked him how he was doing, he will tell me that he was fair to middling. I knew then that things are not great, but they could be worse.
I reckon some of y’all ain’t heard these ol’ sayings in a coon’s age. That is rather sad too. I ‘spect that it won’t be long before they are all gone with the wind. Our speech and our colloquialisms are a rich heritage. It is such a blessing to be born in the Southland