Wednesday, February 12, 2014

Southern Idioms and Hog Farming

In my many years as a self-styled Southerner (read: 'wanna-be') I have not acquired much of an accent, but I have delved deeply into the entomology of Southern Verbiage so as to possibly sound like a native. Idioms abound in all areas of the world, but none are so full of character as those in the South.  

This week, I endeavor to introduce you to one of my favorites.  It comes from a Georgia Gal I knew some time back, and though I am pretty sure she has no real experience in Hogs, Pigs or the feeding thereof, she was quick to use this phrase at dinner time.  

It usually happened that we were having take out, or a buffet style dinner and she got to the table ahead of me with her plate loaded with Southern Goodness.  Rather than wait, she'd dig in but first she'd offer me this axiom: "I'll wait for you like one little piggie waits for another." 

It's not hard for one to imagine the meaning of this phrase, nor its usage.  If you've never seen pigs at feeding time, imagine the worst.  They are like a swarm and any movement of yours that imitates or suggests that food is forthcoming (or has already been served into the trough) causes them to immediately root about, pushing and shoving eating anything they can get their little snouts into. They like to eat, and they have no manners.  (My, how truly un-southern!) 

Now, I'm a gentleman - in fact I consider myself a Southern Gentleman and lest you think I am making references to her size or eating habits, I entreat you to reconsider.  She was neither piggish in form nor in her eating habits.  She just liked to eat when the food was hot.  She did not wait on me, and that's fine by me.  

At least once or twice I found myself also doing the same, using the same phrase to her and digging in. Southern food requires it, Southern Etiquette may not.  

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