A few days ago Iota over at Iota Quota wrote this post about shorthand phrases. Those regional sayings that are unique to different parts of the country... and different parts of the world. Its one of those things that I have always been fascinated by.
I was reminded of those regional colloquialism again yesterday when I walked by a paralegal's office and heard her tell the person on the other end of her phone... "I haven't seen hide-nor-hair of it since." My first thought was, who talks like that? Then I remembered that I'm in Texas and that, honestly, I know a lot of people who talk like that. It just doesn't jump out at me as much when I hear that kind of thing in a barbecue joint, but it does stick out like a sore thumb when said inside the walls of an international law firm. Is that a colloquialism? Stick out like a sore thumb. Do people say that outside of the American south? What about the phrase my sister's secretary used - that's a biscuit eatn' baby - to describe a particularly plump newborn? Some how I don't see folks in Minnesota employing that phrase.
Words are these amazing things that draw us together even as we sit in different parts of the world, and yet even when we are speaking the same language we all have a unique voice, our own style and way of expression. There is something in that that is just indescribably cool. On that note, I would like to add that the word colloquialism is simply fun to say.