Martha, Nichols, Mary Martha discussed on A Way with Words: language, linguistics, and callers from all over


As I was thinking about this. It's like, what would spit nickels, a slot machine, but that doesn't seem like you'd be mad. No, it's just one of a variety of these things that you spit. You're so angry that, well, there's just the expression I'm so angry I could spit or I could spit. Yeah, people who would say I could spit just meaning they're angry or I could spit tax, I could spit nails, I could spit rust, I could chew nails. I could spit rivets. I could spit blood. Or I could really ten feet. A lot of these. Who spits when they're angry? Well, camels may be camels. Yeah. Well, I don't know if they're angry, but they definitely spit. And then I'm going to Australia if they spit chips. If they're thirsty. Chips if they're Thursday. I'm so thirsty, I can spit chips. Some people thirsty. They spit cotton. But anyway, the origin of this is murky, but it's really just about you being so angry that you do something extraordinary that you're out of your head. You're behaving unusually. When we are angry, we don't act ourselves. That is true. That's true. My mom chose to spit Nichols. And the other one she used to say if we were in the car on a motorcycle with speed past this, she'd say, he's going to go head over ten cups. So I have no idea why he would go head over tin cups. Martha, that's one of a set, isn't it? Head over heels, of course. But to rump over tea kettle or head over tea cups and ass over elbow or head over appetites or head over apple cart. All different variety of things. And these go back well into the 1800s. And they're all polite ways of saying that you have fell down and you're discombobulated and probably you felt so so far that your rear end went over your front end. Oh, okay. Kind of cartoon style. It's cartoon style. Maybe even a little bit like what they're today on the Internet they call this the full scorpion. The full scorpion is where you fall down face first and your back legs go up over your head, kind of like a scorpion's tail, reaching for a sting. Landing. Wow. Yeah. So they're both pretty straightforward. They are. And yeah, now that you're saying them, it's like, oh, wait. Yeah, it sounds like your mom had a lot of expressions, juice. She did. And her name was Mary Martha. So I always remember taken by that name. So, yeah. I'll say it again. You can't have too many Martha's. Thanks for calling. I really appreciate it. Well, I really love you too. Thank you again for taking my call. All right. Bye bye. Bye bye. Bye bye. Thanks to senior producer Stephanie Levine, editor Tim Felton, and production assistant Rachel Elizabeth weissler. You can send us messages, subscribe to the podcast and newsletter and catch up on hundreds of past episodes at wayward radio dot org. Our toll free line is always open in the U.S. and Canada, 877-929-9673, or email us, words at wayward radio dot ORG. Away with words is an independent production of wayward Inc, a nonprofit supported by listeners and organizations who are changing the way the world talks about language. Many thanks to wayward board member and our friend Bruce rogo for his help and expertise. Thanks for listening. I'm grant Barrett. And I'm Martha Barnett. Until next time, goodbye. Bye bye.

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