Appalachian Dialect

Appalachian Vocabulary Test 141

pumpkins and whatnots

It’s time for this month’s Appalachian Vocabulary Test.

I’m sharing a few videos to let you hear the words and phrases. To start the videos click on them.

1. Look: to examine food for dirt or other items. “If you’ll look the beans I’ll get us a big bowl to soak them in.”

2. Loafer’s glory: a community meeting place where idle talk is exchanged. “Pap used to go down to the local loafer’s glory at Clay’s Corner and talk with the other men gathered around.”

3. Little old: an adjective phrase describing slight affection, familiarity or disparagement. “She had this little old shack in the back of her house. That’s where she did all her quilting.”

4. Listen at: to listen. “Listen at that wind a howling. I’ll be surprised if the power don’t go off by morning.”

5. Liquor up: intoxicated with liquor. “I reckon he got all liquored up and went down there and caused a big fuss. They said he tore up the whole place before they got enough people to stop him.”

Hope you’ll leave me a comment and tell me how you did on the test. All of this month’s words/phrases are beyond common in my area.


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  • Reply
    Julie Hughes Moreno
    November 1, 2020 at 9:15 am

    I use all but the first two.

  • Reply
    Gaye Blaine
    October 29, 2020 at 5:14 pm

    Down home talk where I hale from; understood everyone! Nostalgia. I told my hair dresser yesterday she could spend the night with me and I would hang her on a lip hook. She was beyond confused ‍♀️!!

  • Reply
    Larry Proffitt
    October 28, 2020 at 1:44 pm

    Tipper, When I read today’s edition I smiled and said these phrases to myself. These phrases are so common to our everyday conversation that I had to chuckle to myself that they are peculiar to our vernacular. Thanks for your work. Even though I only respond occasionally the PIG is the first order of my day.

  • Reply
    Wanda Devers
    October 28, 2020 at 1:20 pm

    All but “loafer’s glory” . It is a super phrase!! Around here the country stores were loafer’s glories but so many are gone now. We had a bakery that the old guys hung out at for years but it closed, too. I agree that McDonalds & Hardees are just not the same.

  • Reply
    Ann Applegarth
    October 28, 2020 at 12:03 pm

    The only ones I knew are “little old” and “liquor up” — the others are so colorful!

  • Reply
    Garland Davis
    October 28, 2020 at 11:18 am

    There was an old country store in the woods a mile or so from our house where the tobacco farmers would congregate of an evening instead of Loafer’s Glory my Mama called it the Buzzard’s Roost.

  • Reply
    October 28, 2020 at 11:07 am

    Look and loafer’s glory are the only two unfamiliar to me. I have used little old all my life.

  • Reply
    Gene Smith
    October 28, 2020 at 10:43 am

    My folks used all of those expressions. The first time I encountered Loafers Glory was on a scenic stretch of the White River in Arkansas that was so named. The next was when I heard Flatt & Scruggs’s recording of the same name. If you haven’t heard it, check it on You Tube. Good stuff. The tune is catchy and the lyrics even more so.

  • Reply
    October 28, 2020 at 10:06 am

    Heard them all except Loafer’s Glory even though there was such a meeting place. When my grandparents moved from the farm very close to town, my grandfather would walk every day down to the courthouse where all the old fellas would sit or stand outside and discuss the world’s problems.

  • Reply
    October 28, 2020 at 10:05 am

    I had not heard the term “loafer’s glory” but caught the idea. Saturday in our town it was the court house steps. Almost any weekday in the Winter it was around the heater in the farmer’s supply store. The others were and are heard almost daily.

  • Reply
    Ed Ammons
    October 28, 2020 at 9:47 am

    I know them all! I use them all! All the time. Sometimes even add to them. Sometimes, for instance “little old shack” ain’t quite enough. It becomes “little bitty tiny old fallin’ down shack”.
    I guess I use likkered up less than the others because there so many nuances in that situation. Sauced, sowsed, plastered, $#!+faced, to name a few. But likkered up certainly has its place.

  • Reply
    aw griff
    October 28, 2020 at 9:20 am

    Familiar with all but loafers’ glory. I’ve heard loafers’ corner or they are loafing down at the store or garage. There aren’t as many of the country stores to loaf in anymore but one I ‘know in E.KY. where there are loafers and your favorite flavor of moonshine, so I’ve been told.

  • Reply
    October 28, 2020 at 9:09 am

    There was a place that fit the description of Loafer’s Glory in my hometown but they never called it that. I thought my family was the only folks who said listen at and little old. Little old comes out sounding like lilo.

  • Reply
    Jim Casada
    October 28, 2020 at 8:43 am

    Tipper–All five of these are common as pig tracks in my experience and vernacular. During my boyhood the town square in Bryson City was known as “Loafer’s Glory,” although it had another, earthier name as well. It was a great place for a young boy to watch old men play checkers, trade knives, swap lies, offer opinions on nearby Bible thumpers when they appeared on Saturday, discuss ongoing trials when court was in session across the street, and verbally solve the world’s problems. The place and its personalities had so much appeal for me that there’s a chapter on “The Lords of Loafer’s Glory” in my forthcoming book.

    Sadly, I think old-time settings meriting the description “Loafer’s Glory” are disappearing from the Appalachian scene (and coffee gatherings at McDonald’s, in my view, don’t count).

    Jim Casada

  • Reply
    October 28, 2020 at 8:20 am

    I have heard and used these phrases all of my life with the exception of loafer’s glory. The men would gather around the country store and set out on the front porch on an old church pew or in winter time sit around a pot bellied stove on turned up coke cola crates and pass the time with one another. I never head it called loafer’s glory. I was a young boy during this time and remember how the men would not say anything dirty or cuss if children or women was in the store. They were always respectful to them. The store owner made sure of this. I wish it was like that today.

    • Reply
      Wanda Devers
      October 28, 2020 at 1:17 pm

      Randy, I so agree. Language today is terrible. Words formerly forbidden to even the worst behavers are in use constantly. I saw (and heard) a group of young teenage girls at Walmart who were turning the air blue. So sad.

      • Reply
        October 28, 2020 at 4:21 pm

        Wanda, I would be lying if I said that I have not cussed at times but I was raised to know I should not do it. I was a drug baby and child. I was drug to church anytime the doors were open, it made no difference if I wanted to go or not and also my parents and after marriage my wife’s family did not use that language. I was at a store a few weeks ago and two young women were outside the entrance door, the language they were using was awful, I think every other word was the f word. Above all you did not use language like this or say anything that was off colored around women or children.

  • Reply
    Ron Stephens
    October 28, 2020 at 8:02 am

    4 of 5, do not recall hearing “loafer’s glory”. But the mind that came up with it seems familiar. Alas, I don’t think I use the 4 myself. I reckon I got influenced out of them.

  • Reply
    gayle larson
    October 28, 2020 at 7:52 am

    Know them all very well.

  • Reply
    October 28, 2020 at 7:46 am

    A part of my everyday speech

  • Reply
    Sue Gregory
    October 28, 2020 at 7:41 am

    If I remember correctly, my Mamaw used the word, “hain’t” which I believed to mean the verb, have not.” It could also be used to describe a ghost or apparition. Yes I’m a retired English teacher, but there is absolutely nothing wrong with colloquiums.

  • Reply
    October 28, 2020 at 7:14 am

    Morning All,
    These are all common phases used in conversations I hear around hear in East TN with the exception of “Loafers Glory”. When I hear someone use that I think of a community near Bakersvilles NC.

  • Reply
    October 28, 2020 at 7:03 am

    I never heard of loafers’ glory but I have known several places that fit that description.

  • Reply
    Miss Cindy
    October 28, 2020 at 6:23 am

    Tip, these are all beyond familiar to me. They are not just colorful expressions they are everyday life, and I love every one of them!

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