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My Mama/Grandma Used To Say...
Between my mother, grandmother, and sister-in-law (who was raised by her grandmother), I have heard quite a few colorful expressions regarding the ways of life in my thirty something years on this planet. These female mainstays in my life, have always possessed a knack for expounding on everyday matters through their antiquated euphemisms.
The older I get, the more and more I find myself adopting this same way of speaking as I address those in my personal life. Not one for a loss of words, I usually begin all such expoundings with - "My mama/grandma used to say", followed quickly by a layman's explanation of what it all means.
Here are ten of my favorite - "My mama/grandma used to say" euphemisms, and their meanings...
1.) Old Things Cost For New- Exclusively used while addressing my children; when visiting friends and family, they are not to put their hands on things that do not belong to them. If you break it, you'll have to replace it, no matter what previous condition the item was in.
Even if the item was used, the recipient will receive a new one in place of the one destroyed. So in every true sense of the meaning, old things cost for new. In essence, respect other's property and keep your hands to yourself!
2.) Don't Let Anyone Give You A Wooden Nickel- Use your God given commonsense, and don't be taken in by every Tom, Dick, or Harry - Sue, Sally, or Jane.
3.) If You Lie, You'll Cheat, If You Cheat, You'll Steal, If You Steal, You'll Kill- One wrong can eventually lead to another wrong. The path of dishonesty is a long and hard one. Once you start down that path, you'll only dig a deeper hole for yourself.
4.) Look With Your Eyes, Not Your Hands- Ultimately my all time favorite; you're essentially telling your kids to keep their busy little hands to themselves. The best time to use this phrase is when you're shopping or going on an excursion.
5.) That's Like The Pot Calling The Kettle Black, When They're The Both Same Color - You can't make judgements about someone else, when you're doing exactly the same thing they are doing.
6.) Something In The Milk Ain't Clean- Something about this situation isn't right. Things are just not adding up.
7.) You Made Your Bed, Now You Lie In It- You made certain choices that put you in your present situation, so suck it up and deal with the consequences.
8.) You Lie Down With Dogs, You'll Get Up With Fleas- If you put yourself in bad situations or surround yourself with unsavory individuals, just expect to reap the negative repercussions that come along with it.
9.) Don't Let Your Right Hand Know What Your Left Hand Is Doing- Avoid the urge to toot your own horn, advertise, or make known what you do for others (your charitable deeds) - even to those close to you.
10.) Don't Put All Your Eggs In One Basket - Don't rely on one plan and one plan only. Whether it be financial or otherwise, always have a backup in the event your prior plans don't fall through.
These euphemisms have been passed down from generations to generations, and have truly stood the test of time.
Although considered old-fashioned and out-of-date, these valuable catch-phrases are extremely relevant even in our day and age.