Jun 16 2016
In keeping with this week’s theme on words…
…a few months ago, I wrote about going “Crafty Stitches,” which is the most recent addition to an ever-growing list of family dialect. Phrases that are nonsensical to anyone living beyond the farm’s boundaries, but laden with meaning among our crew.
Many of these terms evolve spontaneously, spurred by a single incident, but they take hold and cling to our family vocabulary.
Like what, you ask? Well, here are just a few:
Term: Purple Karate Belt
Definition: A lie, specifically a statement that one wishes to be true
Origin: When fetching the kids from camp a couple years ago, the counselors expressed admiration for young Hadley’s prowess in karate, specifically, reaching purple belt status. I clarified that she’d never tried karate, much less earned a belt of any color. Hadley later admitted that she told this tall tale because she really wanted a karate belt, and purple was her favorite color.
Sample of use: “Brynn, you’re telling me that your friend rides her pony to school everyday? Really? That sounds like a purple karate belt to me…”
Term: Going Crafty Stitches
Definition: Overly agitated; borderline irrational
Origin: Hadley’s sewing shop moved locations while Brynn was hospitalized. I assumed the store had closed and I wanted to harm the sewing store staff.
For example: See this blog post
Term: Donkey Traffic
Meaning: Traffic due to high volume, unrelated to an accident or an obvious delay
Origin: The local afternoon rush often causes a back-up at the stop sign in town; years ago, donkeys lived in a pasture along this section of road and we always got a good look at them as we inched along. Now it applies to heavy traffic anywhere.
For example: “Sorry I’m late. I was nearly home when I hit some donkey traffic.”
Term: Go Count Cows
Meaning: Go away, take a hike, leave me alone
Origin: When the kids were driving us nuts, Martin and I would tell them to walk up the driveway — at least as far as the neighbor’s field, which is often stocked with cattle or dry dairy cows. To this day, the term is used literally.
For example: “I have a work related call to make and you guys are way too loud. All three of you: go count cows.”
Origin: Big John, this is all you. Several years ago, the aforementioned let one go and told the kids that a frog was responsible for the sound.
For example: Do you really need an example?
Caveat: We have barn cat named Frog, and I have a friend nicknamed “Froggy.” Neither Frog nor Froggy are associated with the above reference.
So, there you have it. If you have a problem — I don’t care if you get stuck in donkey traffic — you better go count cows. I don’t want to hear any purple karate belts about frogging. I’ve had enough today. Don’t make me go Crafty Stitches.