Some Newly Collected Sayings,
Canadian & Otherwise
Hunting in Canada
We’re gonna deke out for some jack-lamping.
• Jack-lamping is illegal hunting at night with bright lights, often fastened to the roof of the cab of a truck. Such lights can be used to stop deer in their dainty-hooved tracks and then the brave hunters can blow their heads off with elephant guns. Ah, what manly sport!
Alberta Tough Guy
He has more guts than Gainers.
• Gainers was a packing plant that existed in Edmonton for many decades.
Canadian Prairie Weather
You know it's a bad prairie storm when your mother is going through the ash trays for the third time trying to find enough tobacco for a re-roll smoke.
from Bill Turner, Brandon , Manitoba
She was some choked off.
• In our Maritimes it means that she was very angry.
Whatever floats your boat.
• Meaning: whatever makes you happy, content, or satisfied, this maritime expression can also suggest that you try whatever method will work in a current work project.
Tyler B., Corner Brook , Newfoundland
How Drunk Were You?
Woke up with a sore arse and a tattoo.
He couldn't get a job shoveling horse shit at a rodeo.
• He's not too bright.
Len Ross, North Bay , Ontario
Saying the Wrong Thing
When he opens his mouth, it is only to change his foot.
I got rid of my alcohol problem. I divorced him.
You Can’t Take It with You
There’s no trailer hitch on a hearse.
Tim Gompf, near Oak Lake , Manitoba
Drive it like you stole it.
• This is advice to someone driving a vehicle too slow.
No chuppah, no shtuppah.
• The basic meaning here is that there shall be no sex until we’re married. Both words rhyme with cook-a. This is an old, rough joke supposedly uttered by a North American Jewish princess when the young man asks for sex. Shtuppen is vulgar Yiddish (from German) and means ‘to have intercourse.’ The huppah or chuppa is a satin or silken canopy under which an Orthodox or Conservative Jewish bride and groom take their vows. Supported by wooden poles held up by male relatives, the chuppah often has a Biblical quotation stitched in Hebrew letters into the silk or satin. Jewish scholars suggest the original meaning in Hebrew may have been ‘covering’ or ‘room of the covering.’ In some historical Jewish communities the chuppah was the bride’s veil; in others a shawl that covered the heads of both the bride and the groom. In American and some Reform synagogues the chuppah can be an arch woven of green leaves and flowers.
Bill Casselman, January, 2017
Text Copyright 2017 William Gordon Casselman
At the Wording Desk
Increase your English vocabulary by listening to the vivid potency of Canadian folk speech