Is the cake free? I’ll have just a titch more…

I don’t even like cake, but if you were offered cake for free, don’t you think you’d probably have a piece? Then at the Christmas party, Aunt Elizabeth says, “Oh, no one likes my cake. Looks like one person took a piece.” Would you walk away and disappoint her or would you take just a “titch” more to make her feel somewhat fulfilled? Maybe it’s just fun to say. “Titch.”

Slang is one of the wonderful aspects of our ever evolving cultural dialects.

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I recently read that in Ohio, they say such things as, “Where’s me a dog?”, to which “Here’s you a dog,” is the only logical response. Idioms are one of the signs that language has adapted over the years. It’s interesting to find out that what you think a word means in one state could vary in the next.

For example, the word “titch” comes from the name of an irregularly small music performer who went by the name of Little Tich. Fun fact: He was also born with slightly webbed hands with an extra finger on each.

I’ve always been interested in accents and regional slang in particular. In Florida, I remember hearing “funna” a lot, especially among young guys who thought they were “cool”. If you’ve never heard anyone say “funna” before, it’s a rough translation of “going to”. Somehow, along the line, the true nature of the phrase, “I’m going to turn 12 next year,” turned into “I’m gonna be 12 next year,” which in turn melts down into something similar to listening to the sound of eggs frying themselves to a crisp on a hot sidewalk in the summer: “I funna be 12.”

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via Odyssey

Or, if you go a little further north, say, Tennessee, I’ve heard people say “fixin’,” as in, “I’m fixin’ to go to the store.”

You might hear this in passing, and think, “What???” especially if you’re equipped with a literal frame of mind. Your brain might conjure up the image of someone who’s gathering up joists and drywall adhering apparatus to add on another room to a local coffee shop.

Now, if you listened to my mother speak for more than a minute, you might think she’d descended from Jewish New Yorkers, what with her accented version of “kwaw-fee” juxtaposed with her frequent bouts of “oy vey”s. Where did she learn these words from? Who knows.

Here is a list of words, I’d like to use in everyday conversation, but I rarely have the chance to, just because they’re so esoteric:

  • Inkpen
  • Heartless wench
  • Gamish
  • Dodgy
  • Smattering

After sitting on this post for three days, I’m realizing I might like synonyms for tiny things, too. See:

  • Titch
  • Minutiae
  • Mite bit
  • Smidge
  • Not a whit more

Are there words so finely tuned in other languages? What are the Spanish or French versions for such minuscule measurements? From my two years of Spanish in middle school and three years of French high school/college, all I got it is gross and/or mas. Which are terms for large items…

Aren’t synonyms fun? Can you think of any weird words that you’ve heard in, say, another country or a different state? Send me a message on Facebook or something and maybe I’ll add them in here.

 

I don’t know what A-Tisket A-Tasket means, but this clip is sort of cute.

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