Thursday, February 7

Taking Umbrage.

I love the word Umbrage. We have always used it, in our family. We use it in the context of taking something as an insult. Somehow taking umbrage to something makes it sound more dignified.
As opposed to being thin skinned, perhaps, or getting offended over nothing.

"Old Uncle Herbert took umbrage at the suggestion he trim his food splattered beard".
You know the sort of thing. Perhaps a light remark from a child, "O look Aunty Myrtle is growing a beard!"
Of course, Aunty Myrtle is going to take umbrage. Probably cutting said child from the Will. Forever.

I took umbrage at a Tank-shaped old Aunt-by-marriage of Gom's, who came to visit me in Hospital after I had given birth to our son. She peered at him, sniffed, & said "Oh he got the 'Flapstick' family nose!"
The 'Flapstick' nose was a horrible large bugle-like appendage some of the Mil's family had inherited. I was apalled, & really upset. Our son didn't have the 'Flapstick' family nose, nor did any of our children, thank goodness.
Of course I never really forgave the old Tank, & it was lucky we rarely saw her.

It was a lesson to me, if you can't say anything nice, say nothing!

I was surprised to discover Umbrage also means shade, as from leaves on a tree. "He took umbrage under the oak tree"? Doesn't sound right somehow. "The Oak provided umbrage for the weary traveller"? Is that better? Somehow I don't think it will catch on, in that context.

Our Grandmother & Mother had a good stock of phrases that always made us laugh.
One of my mother's was "Casting Pearls before Swine", & she would occasionally use it about us, meaning we had cloth ears, or stubbornly refused to heed her words, of wisdom or advice.

Another was the phrase, "There, that is just the ticket!" I haven't heard that used for a long time.
Another is, "Well, I'll be a Monkey's Uncle!" Or used as "I don't know him from a Monkey's Uncle." Mind you, I don't know that that was one our mother used. It was more likely a contemporary one, used by us, with our school mates.

When I was about 13 I discovered Georgette Heyer's books, & a girlfriend & I took to using a lot words from those books to describe dismay. 'Stap Me!' was a favourite, & my brother & I still use that.

I remember my mother describing a very tight fisted man as being "As tight as a duck's b*m." It annoyed me, & in the end I asked her why she would say that. She said "Well a duck's b*m is watertight, isn't it? You can't get anything tighter than that!"

In other news.
Our daughter has her car back! Woo HOO!
Some absolutely incredible lies have been told about the whole thing.
Over the course of the last 6 weeks there have been so many lies, & fabrications, it defies belief.
The latest was yesterday morning when the mechanic told Sil, he had found the problem, "It is Rat Shit".
Stunned silence from Sil. Then he informed the mechanic that the car had been to 3 other places having various problems looked at, & no one had mentioned rat droppings. "Besides" lied Sil, "I have taken Digital Photos of the Motor, so I must look carefully at those".
Stunned silence from the mechanic. Then he hastily added, "Well it could be old Rat Shit. I will Steam Clean the motor for you!" Sil told him to do as he wished.
There would be no further monies.

End seems to be they have finally fixed the car. It is to be checked out again, by another mechanic, who basically said the RS man was a liar & a cheat. He indelibly marked a part, just to check it has been replaced.

We have the use of our car again, so perhaps I can get my walk on the beach.


Now, how cute are these??

They are the most adorable pair of Salt & Pepper shakers. Our friend's daughter who has returned from Japan, brought them home for us! I love them, but wont use them, since I would hate to break them.

Thank you so Much A.

For today's Odd Shot, there are these two little carved wooden containers. Since they are round, I cant really call them boxes.
I got them at a Garage sale, & the lady who sold them, told me she had bought them in Poland, & they were handmade, & are Christmas items.

I wonder if anyone out there knows if they are Polish?
This is another pic I took of them, trying to get a nice sharp image.

I am a collector of 'crap'. I love things that are different or percieved that way by me. I just fell in love with this little container. It has holes in the lid, & I suppose it is an incense holder.
I like the greens. Underneath it says 'NanJing Road. Hand painted porcelain.
Made in China'. There is a signature that looks like a pot with a lid, made out of Chinese characters.
More junk for Gom to dispose of when I either cark it, or lose the marbles!
Leo is in the dog box. He had a relapse, so he is being tethered some more.
Gom is gloomy about it, & sits on the floor beside him.
Janis Ian, Hymn, with Phoebe Snow.


meggie said...

I forgot "That really takes the cake!"

Anonymous said...

Indeed it does take the cake, Meggie!

The Sagittarian said...

"A collector of crap" - I love all the junk/antique shops, takes me ages to drive anywhere because I'l always stopping off here and there for a peek at some undiscovered treasure. My kids hate it. My husband tolerates it. My dad was acrap collector too so I am sure if inherited the joy of discovery from him!!
My aunt (from the UK) alwasy used "'struthe" to exclaim something or other.

DubiQuilts - Debbi said...

I just wanted to say I am reading your blog, but I have not left a comment in a very long time.

DubiQuilts - Debbi said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
meggie said...

Hi All, I am a junk shop junkie! I just love old & unusual items.
My brother has the better memory for he collects old & unusual sayings, adages etc, & can recite all sorts of ditties, clean & otherwise.

Debbi, I know you have been having a tough time! Be Well, & thank you for calling in.

Thimbleanna said...

So funny Meggie to hear phrases you grew up with as some of the same ones I heard while growing up. Seems so amazing to me for that to occur when we grew up so far apart before the internet age!

Tanya said...

I hope your friends' daughter had lots to tell you about Japan and had some interesting impressions. Did she have a good experience with her host family? One of my friends just said good-bye to an exchange student from New Zealand and they were soooo thrilled with the bright cheerful personality of the girl. They are a nice family so I'm sure the girl felt the same. Hope you friend has good memories.

bluemountainsmary said...

I love that green and white container too.

I love the old sayings and will often say to the kids "I am as full as a fat girl's sock" or "I am as full as a butcher's dog, " after a big meal.

They look at me as though I am crazy but I bet they end up saying them when they are my age!

meggie said...

Anna, I think a lot of us come from similar backgrounds, Anglo Saxon? But then I think of your lovely Pancakes, & perhaps not??
I really like the diversity of many peoples blending traditions & language.

Tanya, Our friend's daughter had a wonderful 2 months with her Host family, & really loved her stay, & her school experience. She has nothing but praise for the Japanese People. For a 15 year old, she found it all magic!

Ali Honey said...

The little "polished" wood containers are beautifully decorated and the green and white piece is very lovely.

Regarding talking to yourself, I think it is very sensible and at least you are talking to someone of similar intelligence with similar interests! No expalining is necessary. I do it; I also talk to the cat and he talks back. Worse still I thank the washing machine when it finishes as it has a notice that wishes me a nice day. I could go on but that is probably incriminating enough!

Ragged Roses said...

I love seeing your "odd shots" Meggie. Taking umbrage is a brilliant phrase isn't it! I have the problem of mixing sayings up, is it mixed metaphors? Anyway it amuses my family

Anonymous said...

Yes, umbrage is a good word. I must try to use it.

We say "that takes the biscuit" rather than cake.

My favourite is "there's nowt so queer as folk" - I use it all the time when people do odd and unpredictable things.

I love those Japanese bunnies. They're just perfect.

Anonymous said...

Meggie , Mary also used to use " That takes the biscuit" sometimes , as well as " I'm as bloated as a poisoned pup " -- " As full as a Tick " was often used too -- One of my favourites was the old 'All piss and wind , like the Butchers cat " to describe someone full of bluster and noise and no substance .Some of our uncles and even our aunts had other ,sometimes rather rude , but very funny expressions too -- Some of the Monkey ones spring to mind !!

Mike said...

My grandparents used to have some great old sayings and I loved hearing them because they were so very descriptive. I don't think we are coming up with any new "sayings" anymore--or at least none as descriptive as our grandparents had.

david mcmahon said...

My love of words comes from my mother. I enjoyed this post (all the way from Melbourne)

Glad your daughter got her wheels back!

meggie said...

Mary, you must have sneaked in. "full as a family Po" was used for a person somewhat inebriated, & that is a very old saying!

Ali, I sometimes talk to appliances out loud-usually to remonstrate with them!

Kim, Mixed metaphors can be fun!

Henri, I knew you would remember more than I could.

RB, our mother used the Nowt so queer as folk too!

Mike, the colourful sayings just dont seem to be used so much.

David, Thank you for calling & leaving a comment.

Q said...

This was such a fun post!
I say "fiddlesticks" or "darn it donut" when things go awry.
Did you see or hear about the solar eclipse? Visible I think for you. Not entirely sure.
Glad you have your car back. Maybe the rain will stop and you can go to the beach!
I did an antique business from old things I bought at garage sales and flee markets! Did rather well too.
Vintage can be very pricey. I try very hard not to buy anything as my house is full!
Happy Chinese New Year.
Happy year for the Rat.

meggie said...

We couldn't have seen any eclipse, as the sky was full of thunder clouds, & it poured with rain.
We had 3 seasons in one day yesterday- amazing.

Ex-Shammickite said...

Umbrage! Hmmm... that's a fab word, I'm gonna start using it.

meggie said...

Hi Ex-shammickite, Nice to meet you. Thanks for visiting & leaving me a comment.

Elaine Adair said...

I am passing over all the cute phrases, and sayings, only to STOP DEAD at the darling salt and pepper rabbits. How cool is that? Well, the boxes aren't bad either. Nice pics! Lovely loved things, maybe not by the former owners, but now by you.

Tanya Brown said...

"Oh he got the 'Flapstick' family nose!"

Grrrrr! It's always nice when people have kind, supportive words for new mothers.

Rat shit, eh? That's a new one. Love the bunny salt & pepper shakers.