Guide to Southern Sayings, Phrases and Lingo

If you want to fit in with Southern folks, you need to understand some of the key phrases and lingo to fully adapt.? We compiled a guide of the some of the common phrases you may encounter and what they mean.? Learn and remember them.? They may come in handy at some point.

Southern Sayings and Lingo

A whistling woman and a crowing hen never comes to a very good end. (be who you are)

Ain’t that the berries! (that is great!)

Aren’t you precious (Most always said sarcastically in response to someone being offensive (i.e., if you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say it at all)

As easy as sliding off a greasy log backward. (very easy)

Barking up the wrong tree. (you are wrong)

Be able to see Christmas (This has nothing do with physical appearance — instead it means misbehaving)

Be like the old lady who fell out of the wagon. (you aren’t involved, so stay out of it)

Being ugly (This has nothing do with physical appearance — instead it means misbehaving)

Bless your heart (A seemingly empathetic phrase usually uttered when the speaker believes the recipient to be sweet but misguided or stupid or when they believe the recipient needs to grow up and deal with it; when said sarcastically, dumb ass)

Britches (Pants or underpants)

Busy as a stump-tailed cow in fly time. (very busy)

Caught with your pants down. (surprised and unprepared)

Chugged full. (full and over-flowing)

Do go on. (you must be joking)

Don’t bite off more than you can chew. (attempt what you can accomplish)

Don’t count your chickens until they hatch. (first know the results)

Don’t let the tail wag the dog. (the cheif is in charge, not the Indians)

Don’t let your mouth overload your tail. (talking too much)

Don’t have a pot to piss in (really broke)

Either fish or cut bait. (work or make way for those who will)

Even a blind hog finds an acorn now and then. (everyone is sometimes lucky)

Every dog should have a few fleas. (no one is perfect)

Eyeballs are floating (Need to use the bathroom very badly)

Fly off the handle. (angry and lashing out)

Get the short end of the stick. (not invited and treated wrong)

Give down the country. (give someone a peice of your mind)

Give me some sugar (give me a kiss)

Go hog wild. (have a good time)

Go off half-cocked. (have only half the facts)

Go to bed with the chickens. (in bed early)

Go whole hog. (go for it all)

Good ol’ boy (A male who tends to enjoy challenging situations; tends to be rambunctious and often enjoys hunting, mudding and fishing)

Gone back on your raisin. (deny heritage)

Got your feathers ruffled. (upset and pouting)

Happy as a dead pig in the sunshine. (doesn’t grasp or worry what’s going on)

Have no axe to grind. (no strong opinion)

Hissy (Shorthand for a hissy fit — a grown-up tantrum as bad as a toddler would throw)

Holler like a stuck pig. (someone mislead you)

I do declare. (usually means nothing)

In high cotton. (rising up in society)

In a coon’s age. (been a long time)

Like a bump on a log. (lazy and doing nothing)

Like two peas in a pod. (act and think alike)

Mend fences. (settle differences)

Scarce as hen’s teeth. (no such thing)

Sight for sore eyes. (Nice to you!)

Stomping grounds. (familiar territory)

Sun don’t shine on the same dog’s tail all the time. (you’ll get what you deserve)
That takes the cake. (surprised)

Too big for one’s britches. (someone taking themselves too seriously)

Two shakes of a sheep’s tail. (done quickly)

Well, shut my mouth. (shocked and speechless)

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