Friday, May 5, 2017

Some familiar sayings

We are Grand-dog sitting tonight, tomorrow AM Stella has a Soccer game. Around here we keep a busy schedule.  ha!

I ran across an old file I had saved that has some sayings I was familiar with, BUT did not know the origin.  The first one was a surprise to me, because I remember President Truman kept a plaque on his desk that said:
The Buck Stops here.
So #1 is:
Most men in the early west carried a jack knife made by the Buck knife company. When playing poker it was common to place one of these Buck knives in front of the dealer so that everyone knew who he was. When it was time for a new dealer the deck of cards and the knife were given to the new dealer. If this person didn't want to deal he would "pass the buck" to the next player. If that player accepted then "the buck stopped there".

(Note: I still carry a Buck Knife but seldom played cards)

The Mississippi River was the main way of traveling from north to south. Riverboats carried passengers and freight but they were expensive so most people used rafts. Everything had the right of way over rafts which were considered cheap. The steering oar on the rafts was called a "riff" and this transposed into riff-raff, meaning low class.

The Old English word for "spider" was "cob".

(That one I was glad to learn)

Traveling by steamboat was considered the height of comfort. Passenger cabins on the boats were not numbered. Instead they were named after states. To this day cabins on ships are called staterooms.

(I didn’t know that and I have heard that term for years)

These were floating theaters built on a barge that was pushed by a steamboat. These played small town along the Mississippi River. Unlike the boat shown in the movie "Showboat" these did not have an engine. They were gaudy and attention grabbing which is why we say someone who is being the life of the party is "showboating".

(Showboating was a very familiar term around home I the 50’s)

In the days before CPR a drowning victim would be placed face down over a barrel and the barrel would be rolled back and forth in a effort to empty the lungs of water. It was rarely effective. If you are over a barrel you are in deep trouble.

I sorta felt like I was ‘over a barrel’ for tonight’s blog entry, but I feel better now!

Nite Shipslog
 1928 Model A Ford.
I had a friend who thought he wanted an A model a few years ago. He bought on and kept it a couple months and sold it. He said, "I had forgotten how hard cars drove without power steering."


betty said...

I didn't know where any of these sayings came from so it was fun to read about them here :)



I appreciated the history of these sayings. Good to know.

Dar said...

Very interesting, entertaining and knowledgeable entry. I enjoyed them, especially Passing the Buck, (I have a Buck knife too) and am going to use it tomorrow night, playing cards with Mom and E. I'll bet she will know that one. I'd also heard about being Over the Barrel. Loved these interesting tid-bits. Hmmm, wonder where that one comes from.?
love you guys, from up north. Being on the road all day, it was nice to see and feel the sunshine.

Mevely317 said...

I enjoyed each of these, Jack! Great fodder for talks round the water cooler. (Oh wait, most of today's associates have no idea what that means. LOL!)

My parents always used to refer to their accommodations aboard ship as a stateroom.