Wednesday, September 9, 2015

Where Do I Buy Those Big Girl Panties?

"Put on your big girl panties and deal with it." 

That expression has been around long enough that some peoples' grannies even use it now. But that expression does raise a lot of questions among the literally-minded.  Lets see . . . . What sort of panties are big girl panties? Bikinis, grannies, or thongs? Or is the user sexist enough to refer to boy shorts? Why does the task or trial at hand require the wearing of panties? Couldn't going commando suffice, particularly in the Summer? And where do you buy them? Does that store have two day shipping?  See?

What about "man up?"  Should a female woman up?" How does a man man up? Does this automatically happen at age 18? Isn't there something inherently sexist in the term? Or does he need testosterone shots? There's even an expression cowboy up. Do people become electricians by electrician up?  

And when someone says spot on, where is that spot? Is it marked with an "X" like expected? Could that be at the Spot Festival? Or is spotted or polka-dotted? Does it require wearing an itsy-bitsy, teeny-weeny, yellow polka dot bikini when visited? I want to follow the dress code. Finally, when Lady Macbeth says, "Out, damned spot," does he go?

We can see terms like Tiger Nation or Bama Nation on sports pages. Do I have to show my passport when entering those places, and where exactly are the boundaries? Are they democracies, monarchies, or peoples' republics? And are the natives friendly?  

There are others. Can I get my skill set from Wal-Mart; or must I go to Home Depot?  Can I buy parts individually?  

And what about teachable moments? Are they just lessons, or more so? Do they need to be approved by the curriculum committee and the Board of Education? At what time do they occur? And do you need a teacher's license to have one? Are they as painful as algebra?

The expression my bad is heard very often; but no one says my good. This is odd, given the self-congratulationary present times. It is rather dismissive of failures; like minimizing them in a way. But is my bad reserved for misdemeanors, or could is also be used for felonies?

I get concerned when someone says that she is killing it. Killing what? Kitties, baby seals, or taxmen? And does this person have homicidal tendencies? And the callousness of offhand using that expression . . . .

The expression bad hair day is a bit overused, especially since it has gone into the metaphorical swamp. I have yet to hear some say that she's having a good hair day. And, anyway, how are those tresses bad? Tangled, lacking luster, mussed up, or (horrors!) simply unwashed? On Monday, my criteria for good and bad hair are relaxed. Thank God for scrunchies!


Anonymous said...

Good take on those overused expressions.

Big Sky Heidi said...

I'm all for going commando as long as it's not too windy.

Linda Kay said...

I heard the "commando" expression in a commercial the other day and thought it had no connection in my mind, but many of those you have mentioned have no application in my mind. Good job thinking all these up.

Mike said...

Orange is the New Black has changed the expression to 'Put on your big girl panties then sell them on the internet'.

John A Hill said...

It's funny how we use expressions in ways that are figurative rather than literal. Earlier today my wife used an expression and I know that the Mexican she was speaking to had no idea what she meant.

And I agree with Heidi -- commando is fine in the summer, but I don't worry about the wind!

Grand Crapaud said...

I wouldn't go to Spot you might get marked.

Cloudia said...

You are a great columnist in training, Angel!


allenwoodhaven said...

Good questions. The public has a right to know!

The Bastard King of England said...

My skill set was made by Lego.

Bilbo said...

Hats off to my fellow observer of semantic oddities!! This was a great post, Angel! I'm glad you found your big girl panties and wrote it.