Ever had the Jim Jams or the Jimmies?

I get the jimmies means I get shaky and nervous

Jim jams noun Anxiety, restlessness.
1885 Murfree Prophet 153 Mirandy Jane hev fairly got the jim-jams. 1996-97 Montgomery Coll.  (Bush, Ellis, Oliver)

jimmies, have the verb phrase To be shaky from fear or anxiety, sometimes due to the consumption of alcohol. 
1997 Montgomery Coll. (Adams, Brown, Bush, Cardwell, Oliver, Weaver).

Dictionary of Smoky Mountain English

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I've heard folks say they had the jimmies my whole life, but I had never heard of the jim jams until I saw the entry in the Dictionary of Smoky Mountain English.

A few weeks ago I went down to visit with Granny for a while. I took one of the girls' laptops along and thought I would write while Granny crocheted.

As soon as I sat down on the couch I got the jimmies...and no it wasn't from consuming alcohol like the definition suggested.

I went outside and weeded Granny's garden and tried to sit again, but still couldn't.

I wondered into the kitchen, washed the dishes, and then asked Granny if she'd like for me to clean out her refrigerator. She said "No, you don't need to do that come sit down with me for a while." I said "I got to do something I can't be still. I'm antsy." She said "Well then help yourself."

Cleaning out the frig finally settled me down and then I was able to sit and write for a good long while. 

I don't feel antsy or get the jimmies often, and I'm sure glad I don't, that's a feeling that I do not like.

I have 2 questions for you.

  1. Do you ever get the jimmies?
  2. Have you ever heard of the jim-jams?

Tipper

p.s. Up coming performances for The Pressley Girls 

  • August 5, 2016 @ 7:45 a.m. Morning Song John C. Campbell Folk School Brasstown, NC - TODAY
  • August 5, 2016 @ 7:00 p.m. Union County Historical Court House Blairsville, GA - TODAY

  • August 26, 2016 @ 6:00 p.m. Crane Creek Vineyards Young Harris, GA

  • September 3, 2016 @ 8:00 p.m. Vogel State Park Blairsville, GA 

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Shelly Beans

Shelly beans in appalachia

shelly bean noun Any large bunch bean that is removed from the shell and is good as a dried bean stored for winter consumption.
1936 Farr Folk Speech 92 = dried beans. "We eat shelly beans of a winter." 1958 Wood Words from Tenn 15 = type of legume that tends to shell itself during cooking. 1971-73 Pederson et al. LAGS (Blount Co TN, Sevier Co TN).  1986 Pederson et al. LAGS 17 of 24 (70.8%) of LAGS speakers using term were from E Tenn. 1991 Haynes Haywood Home 48 In September and October, we harvested pumpkins, squash, shelly beans, potatoes apples, molassy cane and corn....Shelly beans were planted in corn fields or along fences so they would have something for the vines to run up on. We'd pick the beans and spread them on a wagon sheet (thick canvas) to dry in the sun....After the beans on the wagon sheet dried, they were sacked in toesacks (burlap) and hung from a tree limb or rafter in a shed. Then we'd beat the day-lights out of them with a stick. Come the first good windy day some body would get up on a shed roof to wind-clean the shellies. A wagon sheet would be placed below and the beans poured from the toe sack by the person on the roof. As the beans fell to the wagon sheet below, the wind would blow away all the chaff and debris. Clean beans could then be stored. 

Dictionary of Smoky Mountain English

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Our first canning of beans this summer had lots of shellies in them. The dry weather we had at the beginning of the summer seemed to dry the bean pods out faster than usual. When I was growing up, Pap and Granny never harvested dried beans, but Granny called the beans that had to be removed from their pods for putting up shellies. I think a lot of folks in this area do.

How did you like the technique they used to blow away the chaff from the dried beans? Pretty smart if you ask me. 

Tipper

p.s. Up coming performances for The Pressley Girls 

  • August 5, 2016 @ 7:45 a.m. Morning Song John C. Campbell Folk School Brasstown, NC - This FRIDAY
  • August 5, 2016 @ 7:00 p.m. Union County Historical Court House Blairsville, GA - This FRIDAY

  • August 26, 2016 @ 6:00 p.m. Crane Creek Vineyards Young Harris, GA

  • September 3, 2016 @ 8:00 p.m. Vogel State Park Blairsville, GA 

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Appalachian Vocabulary Test 90

Appalachian vocabulary test see how you do

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

I'm sharing a few videos in this test to let you hear some of the words too. To start the videos, click on them and then to stop them click on them again. 

Take it and see how you do! 

 

A video posted by Tipper (@blindpigandacorn) on

1. Directly: in a little while; before long; soon. “You need to wash the dishes your mother will be home directly and I know she hates to come home to a mess.”

 

A video posted by Tipper (@blindpigandacorn) on

2. Doings: excited activity; a celebration. “Looks like some kind of big doings going on down to the folk school. They was cars and people everywhere when I came in from work.”

 

A video posted by Tipper (@blindpigandacorn) on

3. Do up: to complete or finish something. “Tell Granny as soon as I do up the washing I’ll be down to help her.”

 

A video posted by Tipper (@blindpigandacorn) on

4. Draw up: to shrink. “Momma can’t wash any of our wool sweaters in our new washing machine or they’ll draw up." or "Every time I think about dropping that pan on my toe it makes me draw up."

 

A video posted by Tipper (@blindpigandacorn) on

5. Duck fit: a tantrum; an outburst of excitement. “When he found out I quit my job he had a dying duck fit!

All of this month's words/phrases are very common in the mountains of western North Carolina. How about where you live?

Hope you'll leave me a comment and tell me how you did on the test.

Tipper

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The Corn is Tassling

Tasseling corn in appalachia

Corn tasseling in Brasstown NC, 2016

tassel noun variant form of tossel.
1966-68 DARE (Brasstown NC, Spruce Pine NC).  1999 Montogomery Coll. (Cardwell)

Dictionary of Smoky Mountain English

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Our Sow True Seed Trucker's Favorite Corn has been tasseling for about 2 weeks. I'm anxious to see what it tastes like. We have been enjoying the bounty of farmer Tim's garden down the road. He's had Silver Queen coming in for about 3 weeks now. 

When I was a little girl I'd go between the corn rows in Pap's garden and pretend I was in a magical kingdom where bees talked and morning glories wound their tendrils around my arms and legs. Actually, the last time I did that I was a grown woman with 2 girls of her own...but don't spread that around. 

Here's a video I took several years ago in Pap's big garden.

I hope you could hear the bees at work. Seemed like once I started videoing every jar fly in the holler started up

Tipper

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Tooth Jumper - Tooth Puller

Tooth jumper jumping teeth to pull them

tooth jumper, tooth puller noun An untrained dentist who uses a hammer and a nail to extract or cause a tooth to jump out. Cf tooth dentist.
1961 Seeman Arms of Mt 35 Imagine going to a mountain "tooth-jumper," who armed with hammer and nail and kept a pair of home-forged pliers handy! 1972 Cooper NC Mt Folklore 15 The tooth-puller and the tooth-jumper were known as Tooth Doctors. 

Dictionary of Smoky Mountain English

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Jumping the tooth involved placing a chisel or other metal object at the base of the hurting tooth, just under the gum line. While holding the chisel in place the tooth jumper took a hammer and gave it a good hard tap. If it was a successful tap, the tooth jumped out of it's hole.

The process of jumping the tooth sounds so horrible it makes you wonder why anyone would even attempt the method. Here's an excerpt on tooth jumping from John Parris in These Storied Mountains:

But them that really knowed how to tooth-jump could pop a tooth out of a feller's head before you could wink an eye. It was just that quick. It had to be. If one lick didn't jump the tooth out it was all-night-ice-'em. For if the tooth didn't come out with that first lick a feller just went plumb crazy and had to be hog tied till the job was finished.

While thinking of pulling or jumping teeth without numbing is hard to fathom-I do know if you had a severe toothache eventually you'd be willing for someone to help you know matter how bad it hurt...at least I would. 

Tipper

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Faintified - Feeling Fainty

I feel fainty

faintified, fainty adjective Feeling suddenly weak or faint.
1952 Wilson Folk Speech NC 538 This hot, dry weather makes me feel sickly and faintified. 1967 DARE faintified = having a sudden feeling of weakness, when sometimes the person loses consciousness (Maryville TN); fainty = having a sudden feeling of weakness (Gatlinburg TN). 1995 Montgomery Coll. I'm a little fainty this morning (Cardwell).

Dictionary of Smoky Mountain English

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Although I've felt fainty before, I've never actually passed out. 

Since The Deer Hunter and I never had our wisdom teeth surgically removed we knew very little about the procedure the girls underwent last week. We were totally amazed at the speed with which the teeth were removed and we were surprised that it could be done in a dental office. We wrongly assumed it would be out patient surgery in a hospital. 

The folks who took care of the girls had the process down pat. Kids were going through there like an assembly line on the morning Chatter and Chitter had their teeth out. Lucky for us, the girls were the first patients of the morning.

Chitter went first and seemed fully awake and alert by the time Chatter was finished and both girls were in the recovery area. After about 20 minutes of sitting with them, the nurse said we were ready to go.

While Chitter was talking up a storm, Chatter was still so drowsy I was worried about her and questioned whether we shouldn't stay just a little bit longer. The nurse assured me she was fine and after giving us a list of instructions she helped us out the back door and into the car.

I left worried about Chatter, but it was Chitter who scared us to death. 

We'd barely got back on the highway when Chitter said she thought she might be sick. I was in the backseat with her and as we headed for home she got paler by the second. Twice she leaned over and squeezed my knee with the scariest expression on her face which made me feel totally panicked.

We'd only gone about 2 miles when she said she had to stop and get out because something was wrong. The Deer Hunter pulled into the next gas station and opened the car door for Chitter in case she threw up. In a flash Chitter passed out cold on us. I said "Let's take her back! Let's take her back!" 

The Deer Hunter jumped back in the drivers seat and quickly headed us up the road.

Chitter came back around but kept telling us she couldn't see, that everything was white. I was practically sitting in her lap. I kept patting her face and telling her it was going to be alright.

By the time we pulled back into the dentist office her lips were white as snow leaving the rest of her face the color of ashes.

I ran inside and got one of the nurses, who calmly came out and helped Chitter back inside to a dental chair.

Chatter still wasn't talking, only staring around like a newborn baby. While I was grabbing my stuff she looked at me and said "No separate."

I knew that meant she didn't want to leave Chitter. I said "Yes you're going to separate! Your Daddy is taking you home, you got to take care of yourself and there ain't no where for you to lay down in there anyway." 

Once Chitter was laid back in the dental chair and covered up with a blanket her pretty lips became pink again and her skin gained back its youthful glow. The nurse said Chitter's blood pressure dropped really low, which can make you dizzy, nauseous, and even cause you to pass out. The drop did all three to Chitter. Although rare, the drop in blood pressure can happen after anesthesia is administered during dental surgery. 

Chatter made the trip home without incident. We had a friend staying with us so The Deer Hunter was able to leave her at home and come back and get us.

On the second try Chitter made it home without a hitch.

Later I asked Chitter why she kept squeezing my knee in the car. She said "I knew I was going to pass out, I could feel myself fading away and I thought if I held onto you I'd be holding onto consciousness." I said "Ah that was why your expression scared me so bad. You were conveying that strong feeling of need directly from your eyes to mine." We sometimes tease each other about having spidy senses-you know like spider man. Chitter's face alerted every motherly spidy sense in my body. 

The girls having their wisdom teeth surgically removed made me feel faintified. Actually I still feel fainty about the whole thing.

Tipper

p.s. Shane from the Southern Seed Legacy Project said Owl Produce Market on Asheville Highway in Canton, NC has local June Apples right now if folks are looking for them. He also said it's a great place to find out about lots of old family history and many heirloom tomatoes and beans.

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Tooth Pullers

Pap School Pic

Jerry Marshall Wilson - Pap

 

tooth drawers, tooth pullers noun A pair of pliers, often used to extract an aching tooth.
1913 Kephart Our Sthn High 34 He also owned the only "tooth pullers" in the settlement; a pair of universal forceps that he designed, forged, fired out, and wielded with barbaric grit. 1982 Slone How We Talked 104 Tooth pullers or tooth drawers. A kind of pliers made in the blacksmith shop. Mountain people endured a lot of pain, and had to. Each community had someone who owned a pair of tooth-pullers. I remember my father had some and kept them in the drawers of the sewing machine. Every few weeks someone would come with an aching tooth. Father would sit him down in a straight back chair, give him a good "swig"of whiskey, take one himself, and pull the tooth. The patient would wash out with another mouthful of moonshine, and they both went back to work. 1994-97 Montgomery Coll. tooth drawers I sent the daughter to borrow Frank's tooth drawers (Cardwell); tooth pullers (Adams, Brown, Cardwell, Jones, Norris, Weaver).

Dictionary of Smoky Mountain English

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When Pap was about 13 years old he had horrible toothache, the kind that keeps you up at night. One morning just after dawn he decided he couldn't lay in that bed one more minute and suffer. He quietly slipped out of the house and headed over the mountain to see his Grandpa and Grandma who lived in Pine Log. As he reached their house the sun was coming up. 

Pap's Grandpa said the only way to fix the tooth was to pull it. He got a pair of pliers and tried to pull Pap's tooth. Pap said the tooth just wouldn't budge, but the pain was so bad he couldn't stand it and wanted that tooth out in the worst way.

His grandparents had an old sliver of mirror hanging outside where you could see to shave or comb your hair. Grandpa was afraid he'd hurt Pap if he pulled anymore so Pap decided he'd pull it himself. While looking in the mirror, he got the pliers around the tooth. Pap pulled as hard as he could for as long as could, which wasn't all that long because he passed out cold from the pain.

Pap's Grandpa and Grandma decided they didn't care what it took they were going to get this boy to the dentist-and they did. The dentist pulled the tooth and that ended Pap's horrible toothache. 

Tipper

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Onliest

Onliest

onliest adjective Only.
1931 Goodrich Mt Homespun 63 She's the onliest one I ever did know that could do such as that. 1962 Dykeman Tall Woman 70 If the bullet had strayed a little closer, I might have lost the onliest heart I've got! 1974 Fink Bits Mt Speech 18 Hit's the onliest knife I've got n.d. Mtneer Talk = only one. "He's my onliest son." 1994 Montgomery Coll. She treated it as if it was the onlist one she had (Cardewell). 

~Dictionary of Smoky Mountain English

----------------------

I still hear the word onliest on a regular basis in my part of Appalachia. Sometimes I hear it come right out of my mouth when I say things like:

"When I came by the ball field he was the onliest little boy out there. I reckon they changed the day and he didn't know." 

or

"That was my onliest pair of flip-flops!! I can't believe you left them at the lake."

Tipper

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Cornfield Beans

Cornfield beans in appalachia

Cornfield beans

Cornfield bean noun A running green bean planted next to a corn plant so that it will climb the cornstalk as it grows.
1968 DARE = a type of bean that is eaten in the pod before being dried. (Brasstown NC) 1973 GSMNP – 57:84 I’ve knowed the time when we’d have fifteen or twenty bushel of beans, cornfield beans piled up. 1976 Thompson Touching Home 13 = bean that runs up a corn stalk. 1982 Powers and Hannah Cataloochee 199 There was always a pot of cornfield beans with bacon cooking on the stove when the children came in. 1986 Pederson et al. LAGS 11 of 32 (34%) of LAGS speakers using term were from E Tenn. 1995 Montgomery Coll. (Cardwell). 1997 Nelson Country Folklore 118 Cornfield beans had been planted in the cornfield because corn stalks served as a pole for the beans to climb on. In August, the cornfield beans were ready to be picked, and we children helped.

~Dictionary of Smoky Mountain English

------------------------

Granny loves cornfield beans and tries to grow some every year. We didn't plant any corn at her house this year, so we planted her cornfield beans in rows with string for them to grow on.

Granny said cornfield beans make a big ole bean. A greenbean substantial enough to make an entire meal out of. She gets her cornfield beans from farmer Tim down the road. His seed has been handed down in his family for generations. I wonder, if the 1968 reference above is from his family. Actually I bet it is. And I guess I can add my own information to the definition:

2016 Brasstown NC Wilson = a cornfield bean doesn’t always have to grow among the corn but it usually does; the bean is much larger than a white half runner and seems more filling when cooked.

Tipper

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Dusky Dark

Dusky Dark in Appalachia

dusky dark noun The times of day when, and shortly after, the sun goes down; partial darkness, in contrast to complete darkness (called black dark).
1939 Hall Coll. Hazel Creek NC It was just about dusky dark. It was snowin' like water pourin' out of a bucket. (Zeb Crisp) 1941 Justus Kettle Creek 122 "Of course," agreed Aunt Emmy, "you must get home before dusky dark lest your folks worry over you." 1986 Ogle Lucinda 61 I was sitting on top the rail fence, and it was getting dusky dark when I saw something moving toward us out of the Rhododendron thicket. 

~Dictionary of Smoky Mountain English

--------------------

I've always thought dusky dark was the most lonesome part of the day. The portion of time seems lost between the busyness of daylight and the restfulness of black dark night.

Tipper

p.s. Up coming performances for The Pressley Girls 

  • July 10,  2016 @ 2:00 p.m. Festival on the Square Hayesville NC

  • August 5, 2016 @ 7:00 p.m. Union County Historical Court House Blairsville, GA

  • August 26, 2016 @ 6:00 p.m. Crane Creek Vineyards Young Harris, GA

  • September 3, 2016 @ 8:00 p.m. Vogel State Park Blairsville, GA

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