Tuesday, March 1, 2011

It's Your Nickel Buddy

"I'll be back; I've got to see a man about a dog."
"What's wrong with Sandy?!"
“Jesus wept and kitties crept for
god’s sake Charles I’m going to use the bathroom!”
This was an actual conversation that took place between my father and I in his car outside of Sears when I was an innocent child of 10 or 11.
When he left the car I looked at my brother John and we both started laughing hysterically. We both remember that incident to this day and still laugh.
Our father actually talked like that. He was always using sayings that ,while we never heard before, he would attest to their being a long honored piece Americana.
As I got older, I heard a lot of those saying repeated by others, so I figured he was correct about them.
Sayings such as "They have more money than Doan’s has pills" (This was used in describing anything or body that had large amounts of things, not always money, it could also be used for contempt of a slacker as "He's got more excuses than Doan’s has pills", later it was turned into Kellogg’s having flakes as the Doan’s Pill company lost the monopoly on back aches.)
Other sayings include:
"Use your head for something other than a totem pole",
"It's you nickel buddy" (Whenever one of us would call our father we would always know when the conversation was at an end, "Well, it's your nickel buddy, I don't want you to run up a bill. Next time I'll call." He seldom did.)
Should we ever get sassy in our youth we were reminded that "you get wise with me I'll snap you back into reality so fast it'll make your head spin!"
The threat was always enough even though the mental vision of a head spinning was amusing in a 3 Stooges or Daffy Duck kind of way.
Yep Ford had dozens of sayings. But the one that had the least amount of dust on it was used as an expression of Amazement. If a news item or local event ever shocked our father or something immediate caught him off guard he had only one thing to say about it and that was "Jesus Wept and Kitties Crept!"
This saying has to be so old that whatever its origin has been lost in time and translation. When asked about it all dad would say was that he had grown up hearing it and that it was an expression His father had used. Hmmmm.
An "Expression". Some families inherit wealth, others property. Some receive keepsakes to remember their parents, rings, old pottery or paintings or books and things of that sort.
Thirteen years since his passing and all we are left is a handful of sayings and the conundrum of "Jesus Wept..."
This is our legacy. Pass it on guys, it's all we got.

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