My Word ! - An old and very worn-out love

My Word !


That one is an expression to which I can relate ! Simply looking at it here on this page causes complete recall of having often enough said it out loud, infrequently when alone but on multiple occasions when in the company of others. At those moments my companions had, like me, been startled into states of amazement, surprise, consternation, or delight that made for release of adrenalin and the yelling of “My word !”.


Ready for instant use
Ready for instant use

Worn Down


Yes. That expressly expressed expression was one that I really wore down and used up over the years during which I hauled it here and there among other gadget-y things in my quiver. Every now and then I would extract it and fire it out into the world. It was a handy thing to have close at hand, even though, I suppose, the hand was not the part of the anatomy used for expression-firing. As so often happens to critters, you and me, we say things and say things and say things and, all of a sudden we get old and we get weary of saying the same stuff time and again. When that “sudden” hits, you may even hear us saying, “My word !”. (See what I mean?)


Where'd the other one go?
Where'd the other one go?

Twin bathtubs


That posed a question. What do I do now that I have come to understand it was time to discard the use of that “My word !” expression? There are times when a person must be able to reach into the ready sack and grab a non-cussing expression in a big hurry. Surprises, shocks, amazement, and the like, can be thrust onto any of us at any moment. We must be ready when the need arises, when the moment is there – sort of like in those ads on the TV that show want-to-be-mating pairs ensconced in twin bathtubs installed in the front yard so that they might be able to recognize the “moment” brought on by bathing, holding hands, and gazing off into the sunset. Those advertising geniuses figured things out much like I did and as did the Boy Scouts years before we did (“Be prepared...”).


Better hydrants than writers' feet
Better hydrants than writers' feet

No cussing



Writers are not in great need of such expressions during their writing, unless of course the writer hits the wrong keys and something really untoward pops up on the paper or on the screen – or maybe the chair falls over backwards or the dog comes by and pees on one of the shoes or the coffee is way too hot and blisters the tongue. At the eruption of such an event, even writers have to have something to say. Around here, that something had best not be a cuss words. The boss already caught me on that one many moons past. You live and you learn, right? “My Word!” worked really well for years and years. The problem with it is that it is completely worn out now. Its warranty expired a long time back. Replacement is truly required.


Right below the numbers row ...
Right below the numbers row ...
A sure-enough good "piece of cake"
A sure-enough good "piece of cake"

Got it !


Writers are supposed to be able to solve word problems, and that is what we have here. The words under discussion, as has been appropriately noted, are worn out. A replacement expression is needed. Any writer worthy of the title should be able to drag a good replacement out of the keyboard. Testing would consist of rolling the word sounds around the tongue and firing them out into the world. Piece of cake !

True enough, the task was easy enough to describe, but a lot more difficult to complete; that is, until I got smart and let the keyboard help me.

Now I have a new expression to carry around. It is easy to remember, too, but if I ever forget how it goes, all I need do is to glance at the keyboard. There it is, right below the number key row, nicely spelled out and easy to pronounce.

“My qwertyuiop !”


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Comments 9 comments

50 Caliber profile image

50 Caliber 4 years ago from Arizona

Gus great expose on old words I'm bad about several like folks feller and Aye, to name a few but that is the way I talk I don't reckon that to change none to soon but I see your point of redundancy wearing thin, "my word" was one that a drill instructor would have beat the snot out of a feller for saying and was replaced with issue language that I cannot quite get into here or I would have hubbed it a while ago, and got my hub pulled in about 15 shakes of a cats tale, where did the one the teachers scream at me come from "Good Night Irene!" I heard it all the time but don't to this day know from whence it came. Great hub voted up, good to read you again,

May the Blessings be,

dust


GusTheRedneck profile image

GusTheRedneck 4 years ago from USA Author

Howdy 50 - There's nothing quite like having the "snot beat out of you" by a drill instructor. As I recall, they had that procedure down to a real science. We had a fellow in our outfit by the name of Zalfas. He had a favorite (and very overused) expression - "Zatz!" when he said that to you, you were supposed to freeze on the spot. then he'd say, "Unzatz," and then you were OK to move again. Zalfas is no longer with us, and I wonder which expressions he may be using on all of the angels (if he had any luck) or on the guys with those horns (if our prayers had any real effect).

Keep the sand out of your coffee!

Gus :-)))


Hyphenbird profile image

Hyphenbird 4 years ago from America-Broken But Still Beautiful

Hello Gus. Many of us remember these and other old phrases. Thanks for the fun article. Perhaps some young whippersnappers will pick up on them.


GusTheRedneck profile image

GusTheRedneck 4 years ago from USA Author

Hi Hyphenbird - My qwertyuiop ! Now I have to research "whippersnappers." You know what they say - no rest for the weary - or is it no arrest for the wicked...

Gus :-)))


drbj profile image

drbj 4 years ago from south Florida

'My qwertyuiop' has a certain flair, Gus, and if you misspell it, nobody knows. Here is one of my favorite expressions I haven't heard for a coon's age, or longer: ... 'as useful as a screen door on a submarine.' Really paints a picture, doesn't it. Thanks for the fun read, m'dear.


GusTheRedneck profile image

GusTheRedneck 4 years ago from USA Author

Good Doctor bj - My swabbie friends and co-workers who survived Hyman Rickover's College of Knowledge (Groton, CT, and environs), swore to me that those subsurface screen doors cut way down on mosquito infestation. Obviously, they all suffered from the dreadful ODTM syndrome. ("one dive too many").

Those were interesting troops. My buddy, the late Ruben "Duke" Gutierrez, a veteran of 32 years of battling ODTM, had an interesting tale of submarine days in the Pacific Theater during WW2. Seems like they and their companion submarine wanted to attack some Japanese vessels, but they needed to have some voice communication in favor of coordinating the deal. The complement of each of the two subs had one sailor from the land of the Navajo. They radioed back and forth and after they sank one or two of the enemy ships, the survivors talked about overhearing the conversations and being unable to understand a single word that had been said. (Talk about "screen doors" on submarines...)

Gus -)))


brblog profile image

brblog 4 years ago from Chicago, Illinois

Gus,

That is a very folksy sort of expression (my word). It can mean a lot of things, depending on what was said to provoke it. Sounds like something an old aunt might say . . . my word, I'm late, gotta go, I gotta see a man about a horse!


GusTheRedneck profile image

GusTheRedneck 4 years ago from USA Author

Howdy brblog -

First things first (where else would you expect first things to be???) - I enjoyed reading your profile and admire your choices of profession, hobby, and failings (writing ! ) Very nice.

As I now declare - "my qwertyuiop." That says most, if not all of it, does it not?

I have had to kinda sit back a wee bit on this writing stuff lately, but there seems to be some sort of renewal of those urges once again. I hope that I am correct on that. Maybe because of such things, today was a really fine day here. Decided to make a sufficiency of those microwave-oven-baked cheese cakes with which to taunt the appetites of some friends. Did so. My buddy, the one who owns a company in the pulmonary "rescue and treatment" products business gave me a reciprocal present - a really nifty portable nebulizer air pump that plugs into the cigar lighter of my truck. Now, if I get hauled over for speeding over 20mph I can revive myself without having to get out of the vehicle. Everyone should have a day as fine as this one has been.

I hope that your days are all like that.

Gus :-)))


brblog profile image

brblog 4 years ago from Chicago, Illinois

Gus,

I can’t wax quite as eloquently as you do on the subject at hand but I will concur on a pretty good day . . .

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