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Words and customs

  • #1
    Registered Users Posts: 2,708 Curly Judge


    Interesting , provocative and amusing origins!

    Most people got married in June because they took their yearly bath in May, and still smelled pretty good by June. However, they were starting to smell, so brides carried a bouquet of flowers to hide the body odor. Hence the custom today of carrying a bouquet when getting married.
    Baths consisted of a big tub filled with hot water. The man of the house had the privilege of the nice clean water, then all the other sons and men, then the women and finally the children. Last of all the babies. By then the water was so dirty you could actually lose someone in it. Hence the saying, Don't throw the baby out with the bath water..

    Houses had thatched roofs-thick straw, piled high, with no wood underneath. It was the only place for animals to get warm, so all the cats and other small animals (mice, bugs) lived in the roof. When it rained it became slippery and sometimes the animals would slip and fall off the roof. Hence the saying, It's raining cats and dogs.
    There was nothing to stop things from falling into the house. This posed a real problem in the bedroom where bugs and other droppings could mess up your nice clean bed. Hence, a bed with big posts and a sheet hung over the top afforded some protection. That's how canopy beds came into existence.

    The floor was dirt. Only the wealthy had something other than dirt. Hence the saying, Dirt poor. The wealthy had slate floors that would get slippery in the winter when wet, so they spread thresh (straw) on floor to help keep their footing. As the winter wore on, they added more thresh until, when you opened the door, it would all start slipping outside. A piece of wood was placed in the entranceway. Hence the saying - a thresh hold.
    (Getting quite an education, aren't you?)


    In those old days, they cooked in the kitchen with a big kettle that always hung over the fire. Every day they lit the fire and added things to the pot. They ate mostly vegetables and did not get much meat. They would eat the stew for dinner, leaving leftovers in the pot to get cold overnight and then start over the next day. Sometimes stew had food in it that had been there for quite a while. Hence the rhyme, 'Peas porridge hot, peas porridge cold, peas porridge in the pot, nine days old'..

    Sometimes they could obtain pork, which made them feel quite special. When visitors came over, they would hang up their bacon to show off. It was a sign of wealth that a man could, bring home the bacon. They would cut off a little to share with guests and would all sit around and chew the fat..

    Those with money had plates made of pewter. Food with high acid content caused some of the lead to leach into the food, causing lead poisoning death. This happened most often with tomatoes, so for the next 400 years or so, tomatoes were considered poisonous.

    Bread was divided according to status. Workers got the burnt bottom of the loaf, the family got the middle, and guests got the top, or the upper crust.

    Lead cups were used to drink ale or whisky. The combination would sometimes knock the imbibers out for a couple of days. Someone walking along the road would take them for dead and prepare them for burial. They were laid out on the kitchen table for a couple of days and the family would gather around and eat and drink and wait and see if they would wake up. Hence the custom of holding a wake.

    England is old and small and the local folks started running out of places to bury people. So they would dig up coffins and would take the bones to a bone-house, and reuse the grave. When reopening these coffins, 1 out of 25 coffins were found to have scratch marks on the inside and they realized they had been burying people alive. So they would tie a string on the wrist of the corpse, lead it through the coffin and up through the ground and tie it to a bell. Someone would have to sit out in the graveyard all night (the graveyard shift) to listen for the bell; thus, someone could be, saved by the bell or was considered a ...dead ringer..

    And that's the truth..!.


Comments



  • Well, I'm :eek:




  • In a slightly different vein.....




    So this is for the benefit of all my friends who are confused or alarmed by the recent images being broadcast around the world, given that we are now 15 years into the peace process..

    The capital of Ireland is Dublin . It has a population of a million people, all of whom will be shopping in Newry this afternoon. They travel to Newry because it is in the North, which is not part of Ireland, but still pay in Euros.

    Under the Irish constitution, the North used to be in Ireland , but a successful 30-year campaign of violence for Irish unity ensured that it is now definitely in the UK. Had the campaign lasted any longer the North might now be in France.

    Belfast is the capital of Northern Ireland . It has a population of half a million, half of whom own houses in Donegal. Donegal is in the north but not in the North. It is in the South. No, not the south, the South.

    There are two parliaments in Ireland . The Dublin parliament is called the Dáil, (pronounced "Doyle"), an Irish word meaning a place where banks receive taxpayers' money. The one in Belfast is called Stormont, an Anglo-Saxon word meaning 'placebo', or deliberately ineffective drug.

    Their respective jurisdictions are defined by the border, an imaginary line on the map to show fuel launderers where to dump their chemical waste and bi-products. Protestants are in favour of the border, which generates millions of pounds in smuggling for Catholics, who are totally opposed to it. Travel between the two states is complicated because Ireland is the only country in the world with two M1 motorways. The one in the North goes west to avoid the south and the one in the South goes north to avoid the price of drink!

    We have two types of democracy in Ireland . Dublin democracy works by holding a referendum and then allowing the government to judge the result. If the government thinks the result is wrong, the referendum is held again. Twice in recent years the government decided the people's choice was wrong and ordered a new referendum. Belfast democracy works differently. It has a parliament with no opposition, so the government is always right. This system generates envy in many world capitals, especially Dublin .

    Ireland has three economies - northern, southern and black. Only the black economy is in the black. The other two are in the red.

    All versions of the IRA claim to be the real IRA but only one of them is the Real IRA. The North's biggest industry is the production of IRAs. Consequently, we now have the Provisional, Continuity and Real IRA. The Real IRA is by far the most popular among young graffiti writers simply because it is the easiest to spell.

    I trust this clarifies things and has answered many previously unanswered questions for you




  • Curly Judge, you sir/madam are a star. You have such a way with words that I am actually entertained by reading your posts. (Which is quite an achievement for anyone considering I am an awkward bleeder at the best of times. You can confirm this with Chucken if you wish :pac: )

    Thanks for both of those ingenious posts. :)




  • Rubecula wrote: »
    Curly Judge, you sir/madam are a star. You have such a way with words that I am actually entertained by reading your posts. (Which is quite an achievement for anyone considering I am an awkward bleeder at the best of times. You can confirm this with Chucken if you wish :pac: )

    Thanks for both of those ingenious posts. :)

    Thanks for the boost Rubecula but in all fairness I cannot claim credit for the two posts.
    They were sent to me by a friend in the UK and I merely edited them slightly and passed them on.
    I perhaps should have made that clear?
    Apologies!




  • Years ago news papers were hand printed, each letter was placed in by hand n then printed, because p and q was very alike the printer would often confuse them n put p in place if q and vice versa, hense the saying mind your p's and q's ;)


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  • pauldla wrote: »

    Oh dear!
    Does that mean that my post number 3 is wrong as well?:o

    Interesting site, by the way!




  • Oh dear!
    Does that mean that my post number 3 is wrong as well?:o

    Interesting site, by the way!

    No. 3 is spot on, afaik. ;)

    Yes, snopes is an interesting site. It's embarrassed me more than once, though...! :o





  • Most people got married in June because they took their yearly bath in May, and still smelled pretty good by June. However, they were starting to smell, so brides carried a bouquet of flowers to hide the body odor. Hence the custom today of carrying a bouquet when getting married.

    So, why didn't they get married in May? :)




  • THE TAX SYSTEM EXPLAINED IN BEER

    Suppose that once a week, ten men go out for beer and the bill for all ten comes to £100.
    If they paid their bill the way we pay our taxes, it would go something like this..

    The first four men (the poorest) would pay nothing.
    The fifth would pay £1.
    The sixth would pay £3.
    The seventh would pay £7.
    The eighth would pay £12.
    The ninth would pay £18
    And the tenth man (the richest) would pay £59.
    So, that's what they decided to do.


    The ten men drank in the bar every week and seemed quite happy with the arrangement until, one day, the owner caused them a little problem. "Since you are all such good customers," he said, "I'm going to reduce the cost of your weekly beer by £20.” Drinks for the ten men would now cost just £80.
    The group still wanted to pay their bill the way we pay our taxes. So the first four men were unaffected. They would still drink for free but what about the other six men? The paying customers? How could they divide the £20 windfall so that everyone would get his fair share? They realized that £20 divided by six is £3.33 but if they subtracted that from everybody's share then not only would the first four men still be drinking for free but the fifth and sixth man would each end up being paid to drink his beer.
    So, the bar owner suggested that it would be fairer to reduce each man's bill by a higher percentage. They decided to follow the principle of the tax system they had been using and he proceeded to work out the amounts he suggested that each should now pay.

    And so, the fifth man, like the first four, now paid nothing (a 100% saving).
    The sixth man now paid £2 instead of £3 (a 33% saving).
    The seventh man now paid £5 instead of £7 (a 28% saving).
    The eighth man now paid £9 instead of £12 (a 25% saving).
    The ninth man now paid £14 instead of £18 (a 22% saving).
    And the tenth man now paid £49 instead of £59 (a 16% saving).


    Each of the last six was better off than before with the first four continuing to drink for free.


    But, once outside the bar, the men began to compare their savings. "I only got £1 out of the £20 saving," declared the sixth man. He pointed to the tenth man, "but he got £10"
    "Yes, that's right," exclaimed the fifth man. "I only saved £1 too. It's unfair that he got ten times more benefit than me"
    "That's true" shouted the seventh man. "Why should he get £10 back, when I only got £2? The wealthy get all the breaks"
    "Wait a minute," yelled the first four men in unison, "we didn't get anything at all. This new tax system exploits the poor" The nine men surrounded the tenth and beat him up.


    The next week the tenth man didn't show up for drinks, so the nine sat down and had their beers without him. But when it came time to pay the bill, they discovered something important - they didn't have enough money between all of them to pay for even half of the bill.

    And that, boys and girls, journalists and government ministers, is how our tax system works. The people who already pay the highest taxes will naturally get the most benefit from a tax reduction. Tax them too much, attack them for being wealthy and they just might not show up anymore. In fact, they might start drinking overseas, where the atmosphere is somewhat friendlier.

    For those who understand, no explanation is needed.
    For those who do not understand, no explanation is possible


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  • Great post there, Curly; not 100% sure what it's got do do with this forum, but a great post nonetheless. Someone should show it to Richie Boyd Barrett and his ilk...


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