Q is for Quotations

April 19, 2014 at 9:10 am | Posted in Family, Family History, Mental Health, Philosophy, Ways of Living | 10 Comments
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A2Z-BADGE-000 [2014]

 

FAVORITESSAYINGSOFFAMILYANDFRIENDS

There are often certain people in one’s family or circle of friends who are known for the things they say or have said. They have often become part of family lore, associated with that person, often with either a laugh or a grimace.

It can be the same with our friends too. For instance, the normal response to discussions about a problem from a woman we know is a sigh and the comment, “But what can you do?” Another always says, “It’s a worry”.

My family has its own little quirky sayings, and many seem to have rather a philosophical bent. It is mainly two people who had sayings they used quite often, sayings that have been passed down through the generations. In many ways, these favourite sayings illustrate aspects of their character, as they express beliefs they adhered to and lived by.

 

Teddy Thompson 1949, with a grandson & his faithful dog Monty.

Teddy Thompson 1949, with a grandson & his faithful dog Monty.

The adages of my grandfather Teddy Thompson, the poacher and WWI veteran, who died in 1950, have been handed down by his son Ernie, my father. Here are a few:

– “If you see a man walking towards you down the same side of the street and he crosses to the other side, he owes you money. If he crosses from the other side to yours, you owe him money.”

– “Income: one pound; out go: 19 shillings and sixpence– a happy man. Income one pound; out go one pound and sixpence– an unhappy man.”

– “Laws are made fer them as keeps ‘em.”

– When Granddad was in the army, he used to play a betting game called Crown & Anchor. He always made money when others lost theirs. That was because he followed his own advice: “Always be the banker, they’re the only ones who win.”

 

Ernie Thompson 2007, aged 86

Ernie Thompson 2007, aged 86

Dad had lots of sayings too. Some were his own, but others were ones he heard that reflected his own open and positive attitude to life. In his later years, he quoted them often.

– When asked how he was, he would say: “top of the world”. Everyone in the district identified Dad as the ‘top of the world’ man. He later expanded this to, “top of the world, fighting fit and getting younger every day.”

– When someone said it was a nice day, Dad would reply in one of two ways: 1. “Every day’s a nice day; sometimes the weather’s better than others”; or 2. “If you can get out of bed and walk away from it, it’s a good day.” Then he would add, “ Do you realise how many people couldn’t do that this morning?”

– When someone talked about ‘a problem’, Dad would say, “There are no problems in life, only challenges”.

– If he was a bit late for a meal and you told him it was getting cold, he’d say, “It’s a poor belly that can’t warm up a bit of cold food”.

– When we talked about how hard it was to do anything about the problems of the world, he’d say, “Do what you can, for as many as you can, however you can, wherever you can, for as long as you can”.

– Dad was legally blind (10% decreasing to 3% vision) for the last twenty years of his life. When anyone mentioned it as a problem, he’d say, “No it’s not. I look in the mirror and I don’t see any wrinkles; and every woman looks beautiful to me”.

– When walking through a large shopping mall with his tapping stick, he had enough vision to see the movement of people. He said, “As I walk along, they separate like the bow wave on a battleship”.

 

Agnes Thompson Eng.1974 (2)

Agnes Thompson on a visit to England 1974

Mum had a few of her own common expressions too.

– About a pushy person: “S/he’s not backward at coming foreward!”

– Two expressions of amazement that came from Oswaldtwistle were: “Well, I’ll go to our house!”; and “Well, I’ll go to t’top o’ t’stairs!”

– When something was done well, she’d say (and so would Dad): “Go to the top of the class and kiss the teacher!”

– When something was done well enough: “It’s as near as makes no never-mind.”

A saying she liked, but which applied to neither her nor Dad was, “Patience is a virtue, possess it if you can. Seldom found in women, and never in a man.”

Well, that’s probably enough!

If you woke up

Do you have sayings in your family that have been passed down, or that identify a certain member of the family?

 

© Linda Visman 19.04.14  (699 words)

 

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10 Comments »

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  1. Enjoyed reading your “Q” blog post. Loved all the quotes! I’m going to be trying to figure out an emotion that starts with this letter…wish me luck!

    • Thanks for the visit and the comment, Cheryl. Good luck with finding an emotion beginning with Q! 🙂

  2. I was chuckling throughout this post. It’s funny how certain sayings are attached to specific people in our lives. I have a friend who says “long story short” throughout every tale she tells. Now, I’m finding myself doing that, even when my stories are twenty minutes long. I’m trying to break myself of it!

    Thanks for an entertaining article!
    Shawny Lou

    • Thanks for dropping in and for your comment, Shawny Lou. Yes, it can be so easy to pick up the sayings of others, especially the pithy ones. So glad you enjoyed the post, and love to see you again. 🙂

  3. Wonderfully inspiring Linda. It’s amazing how these little sayings become the stuff of our lives too.

  4. They paint a word picture of the character to whom the quotes belong don’t they. Warm fuzzy post 🙂

  5. I can still feel the ring of their voices in my ears when I see those words.


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