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Location: Clearwater, South Carolina, United States

Tuesday, August 30, 2005


When folks in this part of the country get blind running mad - as opposed to drunk - the descriptive term that applies to their angry antics is called a "hissy fit". At least it used to be - and maybe that spelling should be "hissie" - or perhaps one is masculine and the other feminine.

This term can be descriptive of a past event or it could apply to an impending total loss of self-control in the immediate future, but it's seldom spoken of in the present. The reason for this is that while a hissy fit is occurring, one is usually too busy running for cover while dodging thrown objects to even speak of it.

In the old days one would just have a hissy - but now if a proper one is had at all, it has to have the more descriptive "fit" added to even start to explain or understand the true meaning of the occasion.

People can get hot and bothered, ticked off, mad to the max or have a conniption, but these just don't have the depth of passion, nor the real southern flair that is involved in the true hissy.

I wonder if people in other parts of the country have these or do they have something else - like a "cow" or something? In what area of this wonderful land do they have dying duck fits?

Does anyone else remember way back when someone really lost their cool and it was described as having a calf with a rubber tail?

As some of these colorful expressions retreat from society's memory, it will leave a duller, blander language for our children and their offspring. This language will be of fewer words and syllables, and seems to be headed toward more gutter terms and half-spoken partial words.

Could it be that the one syllable grunt and club smash over the head are on the way back? ec


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