So, most of you know that I am a very proud native of Austin, Texas, aka the live music capital of the world, aka the city that has a place for nudie hippies called “hippie hollow”, aka the birthplace of awesome (meaning me). I love it here. I even love it when it feels like the heat is melting the skin off my body. I’ve heard some of you outsiders call it “summer” but we here in Texas call it “8-10 months out of the year.” There is one thing about being an Austinite I’ve struggled with though, and that’s our accents and colloquialisms.
You see, I don’t have a strong Texas accent. Well, I should say, I don’t have the accent most people assume Texans have. I don’t really know many Texans who do. Who told you guys we talked like that? Anyway, that’s beside the point. The point is, I don’t have a very strong accent (Unless I’m talking about football and then things get real country, oh or also when I’m trying to get non-Texans to do things for me, it works like 98% of the time). I’ve been lucky enough to travel all over the world and every time I meet someone abroad and they ask where I’m from and I say Texas their response is invariably the same “You don’t sound like you’re from Texas.” And I never really understand that fully because I was born and raised in Texas so how is it I don’t sound like I’m from Texas? If anyone has a Texas sound, it should be me right? Anyway, I think a lot of why people don’t think I sound like I’m from Texas is because I try to use our slang sparingly. I learned really quickly that when you say “y’all” to people not from the South, they immediately assume your IQ is about 50 points lower than it really is. So, I stopped saying it. But lately I’ve been thinking “Screw that. “Y’all” is awesome. I don’t care if people think I’m dumb, I know I’m not dumb. Those stupidheads are the dumb ones.” Which is a very reasonable and well-thought out argument. So, I’m trying to embrace some of the colloquilisms I grew up with.
Hotter than hell on nickle day at the whore house: This is the perfect description of the heat in Texas, and maybe you haven’t heard, but it gets real freaking hot down here. Also, you can say this in front of your Grammy and she won’t be mad at you for saying “whore”.
Y’all: I already mentioned this one, but I boycotted it for so long, it bears repeating now that I’m embracing it. Short for “you all”, it is the perfect amalgamation of the two words. Also, if you use it at exactly the right moment- it will make your joke about 100X funnier. Its a magical word.
Lord willing and the creek dont rise: This is a great answer to just about any question. Nevermind that I don’t live near a creek, the sentiment is valid. Also, when its not a million degrees in Texas, we have a lot of flash floods, so the creek rising is no joke.
Bless your heart: This may sound nice, but don’t be fooled, its not. Its not nice at all. We only use this phrase when we have just cruelly insulted someone- that way, we feel less discourteous. For example, “She gained a lot of weight and looks like an elephant stuffed in a pink dress, bless her heart.” or “He is dumb as a rock, bless his heart.” That way, when you call someone fat or stupid, you’re also blessing their heart, so your cruelty is cancelled out by your courtesy. Its an excellent way to balance your karma.
But I will never ever say “howdy”, and if you say it to me like you think you’re speaking my language, I will probably curse the day you were born. I don’t know anyone who says “howdy” unless they are being ironic. And even in that case, I’m not really pro ironic howdies. Let’s just lay off the howdies ok?
Are there any colloquialisms y’all like to use???