My father was born in 1947 in Farmerville, LA a tiny town on the Louisiana – Arkansas border. It is and was as small as it sounds. His father was a farmer who used to love to take us to the farm to see his hen houses and who, when he got a little older, bought a herd of donkeys simply because he thought they were funny. Growing up baling hay on the farm is what my dad claims convinced him to go to medical school; he apparently didn’t care for hay bailing. There as a lot to say about my father and his countrified upbringing, but for now, suffice it to say that he grew up with the kind of Southern twang that Jeff Foxworthy made famous (at least similar anyway).
One of the best things about my father is that he has persisted in using many out-dated ways of speaking. He still refers to the refrigerator as the icebox, for example.
Tonight, over a lovely dinner of raw oysters, my dad noted that our waiter, who had been a bit neglectful, was
“busier than a one-legged man in an ass-kicking competition.”
He said it as nonchalantly as though he had asked to pass the salt and looked at my sister and me a little funny when we asked him to repeat it. It is sort of a hobby of hours to keep track of these sayings of his. I’m not sure where my father gets them from; whether some are of his own invention or just par for the course on the farm, but they sure do pack a descriptive punch.
I often find myself with the desire to use such similes in my day-to-day conversation, but have been unable to integrate them so expertly. I frequently find myself starting to say things like “she’s no more ready to go than I am a monkey,” or worse, “she’s no more ready to go than I am . . . um . . .a . . hmm . . . artichoke.” It’s quite sad. Anyway, perhaps recounting them and tracking them in a systematic manner will help me in my plight while multi-tasking as your entertainment or edification. I guess we will find out soon enough.
Update: Turns out the phrase was not of his own invention. Ex) http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=busier%20than%20a%20one%20legged%20man%20in%20an%20ass%20kicking%20contest
Also, speaking of hay, this video is funny: