Regina Sunderland’s book reviews, book announcements, book introductions and book discussion club. It’s all about books!
April 19, 2010
Buzz up! What a find at my local Library. I am one of those goofy people who simply love to use retro phrases and enjoy discovering where they come from.
I Love It When You Talk Retro: Hoochie Coochie, Double Whammy, Drop a Dime, and the Forgotten Origins of American Speech, is the perfect book to read for someone like me. Not only does he cover many different retro phrases, but also explains where they originally came from.
The language is easy to understand, and some of them will have you chuckle. Who can’t use a good laugh?
For example, do you know where the phrase – scrape the bottom of the barrel – originates from?
On Page 133 in “I love it when you talk retro!” he explains it as such:
Direct quote : On the eve of the Civil War, pork was second only to wheat as Americans’ most popular foodstuff. Southerners were especially partial to this meat: freshly slaugthered or as salt park, fatback, cracklings, chitterlings (chitlins), pickled pig’s feet, headcheese, bacon, or ham. Such delectables were liable to be served three times a day. Noting the many form in which Americans ate the flesh of hogs (large pigs), an antebellum doctor in Georgia thought our country should change its name to the Great Hog-Eating Confederacy, or perhaps the Republic of Porkdom.
Pork was typically stored in a barrel. The fuller the barrel, the richer its owner. Poor folks sometimes had to scrape the bottom of the barrel. End Quote.
He continues on explaining about other Pork related terminologies like “bringing home the bacon”, “barrel politics”, “lard it up” and more.
Do you know where “cut the mustard” comes from?
How about “dark horse”?
271 Pages full of delightful and interesting Notes and information await you in the wonderful book! For word lovers and phrase crazies like me, this book is a great find.
I would rate it an easy 5 Star and think it would make a great present for most. You may want to see if you can find it at your local library or order your copy here: