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Hail to the V

No, I don’t mean that V, but what a genius idea that ad campaign was, huh? A marketing team came up with a catchy tagline, albeit controversial, to describe a product that just gets it all out there, paying homage to that. I’m raising my fist in the air with a small pumping action to signal solidarity with my sisters.

(High Five to you if two of your favorite movies are “Baby Mama” and “Bridesmaids,” and I can’t wait to see Tina Fey and Amy Pohler in the upcoming “Sisters.”)


Actual sign in a grocery store. Feminine hygiene, party favors...what's the diff?

Actual sign in a grocery store. Feminine hygiene, party favors…what’s the diff?

That’s not the V I’m talking about, but since I felt it’d get your attention and it’s been awhile since I’ve posted ANYTHING, I hoped with that aforementioned borrowed tagline, you’d stop in. I’ve been very remiss in stopping by your posts and commenting. I apologize in advance and this post may be met with crickets, but even so, whether someone comments or not, I’m writing this blog-stream-of-consciousness-thing.

What V Am I Talking About?

The V in which I refer to is vernacular. Our languages, our words, the way in which we communicate, commiserate, conjecture, cajole, etc. (Can you think of any other C words?) We don’t do that as often, in the literal sense, and it may be backfiring on us. Studies from a few years ago and now, suggest social media (SM) and technology could be increasing social anxiety.

And I get the irony since that’s exactly what I’m doing here.

We shorten words, abbreviate words, use emojis, and don’t really write them (with a pen or pencil) down anymore. We type, text, say it with a picture. I’m not sure, but I don’t think schools teach penmanship anymore. I know some don’t. I don’t have children but I’m pretty sure I’ve read that somewhere.

More than a few times, someone has misunderstood something I’ve “said” (i.e., texted, emailed) because sarcasm doesn’t always translate; oftentimes, it comes across as mean-spirited. Or, when I’ve simply texted/emailed a brief response, I’ve been mistaken for being short, curt. I’ve misunderstood those same things. You?

I read or heard that if one texts a one-word response, omit the period as to not “sound” curt. Seriously there are more rules to this (SM) than proper sentence structure and being grammatically correct. Shouldn’t someone invent a stylebook for all this? Like the Chicago Manual of Style or the AP Style, though the AP has added 42 New Guidelines for Social Media and New York University has a Social Media Style Guide. I’ve not read either one yet. I’m exhausted just thinking about it.



I’m getting off topic and this is getting to be way too long (in length) according to the blog length standard protocol.

When we’re face to face, we pick up on inflection, body language, and facial expressions. When we write in detail, we (hopefully) get our points across in an understandable way and evoke emotion of some kind.

What’s This All About After All This Time?

I’ll tell you what this is all about. It’s about vernacular. My vernacular could be different than yours. I grew up in a small Southern town and we have our own unique vernacular, as I’m sure you do wherever you’re from. Some families have their own vernacular. Cavemen probably grunted differently, depending on what section of what caves they were hanging out in.


Here’s a few expressions I used or heard growing up:

Fixin’ to – You’ve most likely heard this one. It means one is about to do something as in: I’m fixin’ to go home, just as soon as I finish drinking this mint julep. Well, I’m walking home. Fixin’ to.

Tump – A combination of bumping and tipping something over, sometimes, something valuable. Be careful not to tump that vase of flowers over! That was your Grandmother’s best one.

Bless her (or his) heart – This can be said with genuine affection or the absolute opposite. She always helped her mama and daddy; even when it was obvious she wasn’t their favorite, bless her heart. OR He told her he’d marry her, but he ran around on her all the time, bless his heart. (Usually muttered through clenched teeth or gnashing of teeth or rolling of eyes or any combination thereof.) 

I am plum (or plumb) worn out! OR I am plumb (or plum) tuckered out. One is tired, exhausted. Could be from shopping, picking something, or just cause. Can also be used as an excuse (little white lie) if you really don’t want to do something someone asks you to do, thus alleviating his/her of any hurt feelings: I would but I’m just plum tuckered out!

I would share more but since social media standards dictate that 300-600 words is the “standard length, recommended by many “expert” bloggers, but it’s too short to gain much authority for search engine love” I’m right in that sweet spot, just a little past 750 words, “for getting links from other bloggers and shares on social media,” but not quite at 1000-1500 words where I’ll get “fewer comments, but a lot more shares on social media…” but really “it depends on the topic and your audience.”

Good grief. Hail to the V. Both of them.

Here’s a song and please share your unique vernacular (you know the rules) in the comments below and HOW ARE YOU?

References: How Long Should Your Blog Post Be? A Writer’s Guide.

About Brigitte



40 thoughts on “Hail to the V

  1. Brigitte, nice to see you writing! I’ve been away too, but still read a few blogs that I particularly enjoy. Here’s my favourite bit of Welsh vernacular: cwtch, which is pronounced somewhere between cutch and cootch. It means a good cuddle- come and have a cwtch. Take care!

    Posted by Sally | December 10, 2015, 11:30 am
    • Sally! How great to see you. I don’t know what happened, but I come back, as you do, from time to time. I do miss the camaraderie of the blogging community. I am going to use that term—I’ve never heard it and i LOVE. IT. I’m going to tell my hubby that later. 😉

      I so hope you and yours are wonderful and be well, my friend.


      Posted by Brigitte | December 10, 2015, 11:49 am
  2. I think that’s true about the social anxiety. I’ve never been comfortable face-to-face, but over the years I’d grown pretty decent at it. But now that I’m online a great deal, I feel my earlier insecurities in the ‘real’ world returning. Or maybe I’m just feeling that way today because of my book signing tonight. 😉

    I’ve never heard the word ‘Tump.’ Of course, my eyes read it as ‘Trump,’ but let’s not even go there…

    Wonderful post, Brigitte!

    Posted by Carrie Rubin | December 10, 2015, 12:02 pm
    • I read the same thing as what you’ve just described. It’s a catch-22, I think. Introverts who are hugely uncomfortable in face-to-face situations have found a whole new world online and there is some good in that. On the flip side, those same individuals feel, as you describe those earlier insecurities.

      I know you are excited about your book signing tonight Carrie! YAY!! You’re do great. Raise the roof, fellow writer-woman-hear-me-roar. You deserve it so take full advantage. Good luck (but you don’t need it). :).

      Oh me, please don’t go there. Jeez…when I first met my husband, I said that once and he looked at me and said: “What the hell does tump mean?” But seriously, it makes sense, now doesn’t it. bump, tip, TUMP. Without the R!!!!


      Posted by Brigitte | December 10, 2015, 12:08 pm
  3. I feel so out of tune with things–I do not know what V you are referring to–but I am getting a bit soft in the head…..
    as for an expression, being Canadian I must be the first to put “eh” out there–it is a term that is used often up here and usually it means ?, as in it has been really cold lately, eh?

    Posted by on thehomefrontandbeyond | December 10, 2015, 1:20 pm
    • You’re not out of it or soft in the head. It was a dumb marketing campaign. It got all controversial and sparked some comments about all kinds of issues. I thought it was kind of funny but I don’t get all worked up about such things and I thought about it when I saw that sign in the grocery store. My mind wanders. HA!

      Anyway, lovely to see you here, Lou! Ha! I do remember that about my dear Canadian friends. Hope you are well and it’s so great to see you here. Be well, Lou. :), >

      Posted by Brigitte | December 10, 2015, 1:27 pm
  4. I hate that ad campaign ..it makes me uncomfortable. And what the hell is up with that sign in the store? Feminine hygiene and party favors? Really? kerpow..I’m not having any parties these days? You?

    I enjoy hearing and learning colloquial vernacular …but I do experience the occasional misreading via email or text as to the tone or meaning. I chalk it up to interesting quirkiness on my part. ( and others..ahem) I enjoy the “banter”.

    I think that makes me crazy…yup. ( love that song)

    Glad you wrote today. Even happier we did it together.

    Posted by UpChuckingwords | December 10, 2015, 7:31 pm
    • I think it was just dumb and obviously the sarcasm of my genius description didn’t come through. I need a sarcasm emoji. 😬

      Feminine, favors, pantyhose and postcards all on one aisle! What could be better (insert sarcasm here). They have since changed it. I’m guessing I’m not the only one who noticed but I HAD to take a pic. And no, no parties. 😏 Nice to be in good writing company, A. And you KNOW I’m crazy. Thanks sister girl.


      Posted by Brigitte | December 10, 2015, 7:57 pm
  5. Hail to the V! haha thanks for the chuckle. ❤
    Diana xo

    Posted by dianasschwenk | December 10, 2015, 8:57 pm
  6. Brigitte!
    So glad to see your post and so enjoyed it! Ahhh, vernacular. Like you, I grew up in the South (with a capital “S”). There are so many wonderful phrases – all of which were shot down appropriately by my wonderful 11th grade honors English teacher. I especially remember writing a short story and using the phrase: “She put it up.” My teacher had a field day: “She put it up where?” On a shelf above her head? In the hay loft? Where? In the South, “put it up” means disposed of it, placed it in it’s appropriate place, etc. And I’m sure you know that. But I still love “Bless her heart” and I must admit that I still use it from time-to-time. I don’t think there’s a better phrase anywhere to communicate such a feeling!

    I’ve missed you!

    Posted by Cathy Ulrich | December 10, 2015, 10:51 pm
    • Hey Cathy, Some Southern phrases are nice, aren’t they? I bet your English teacher did shoot you down! ha. Remember that one, “rode hard and put up wet?” I too still say bless her heart, sometimes with love, others times with the opposite — it’s kind of the Southern way of cursing in public, you know? It’s so great to see you here — thank you for your loyalty and it’s nice to be back. Missed you and my other blogger buds too! Be well, Cathy. :).


      Posted by Brigitte | December 11, 2015, 8:29 am
  7. Good to see you back, Brigitte! I just squeeze my blogging in when I can, so it’s taking me all day to visit you. I started to read that referenced article at the end. Good grief!! Who can keep up with it all. If someone writes a style guide for social media it should probably be really short. Ha ha. I do various lengths for my posts and yep my shorter ones get more likes and comments. My photos get the most. No words. My sons did learn penmanship and cursive as well, although there will probably be a day when they don’t even need to type. I bet we see that one before too long. Great to see! Loved your post.

    Posted by Amy Reese | December 11, 2015, 12:01 am
    • Thank you, Amy. I know what you mean. I simply don’t know how people keep up with it all. I feel as if I don’t step away from the computer at times, I’m one of the pod people in the Matrix. Weird analogy, huh? I couldn’t read the style guide either. Any style guide is cumbersome, isn’t it?! I’m glad your sons know cursive because I don’t think all school teach it anymore, isn’t that right? I bet your right—we’ll just talk into something. I don’t think that’s a good thing, but what do I know? Always so nice when you stop in — thank you for your warm welcome and glad you enjoyed. >

      Posted by Brigitte | December 11, 2015, 8:32 am
  8. Hi Brigitte, you have been among the missing. I’d make a big thing of it but I’m curt. 🙂 Glad to have you back. –Curt

    Posted by Curt Mekemson | December 11, 2015, 12:35 am
  9. Well I definitely learned something today. I haven’t heard of “tump” before so I’m glad you’re here to educate! Social media and all other non-face-to-face language is just annoying sometimes because like you said, who can keep up with it all? Capitalization in texts and chats apparently means you’re stuffy or just old but no matter what, I still insist on capitalizing “I”, even if I slip on other capitalizations. My youngest sister deliberately turns off the auto-caps on her iPhone because she said caps are lame. I was too offended to even bother answering that.

    So wonderful to see you again, Brigitte. I’ve been away from the blogosphere myself but am hoping to return soon. Life gets in the way but I still get the itch to write and connect with people from time to time.

    Posted by lillianccc | December 12, 2015, 12:36 pm
    • I’m here to educate — ha! I didn’t know that about the capital thing, Lillian, but like you I don’t care. I’m going to capitalize the beginnings of sentences and I normally don’t use “u” for “you.” I’m old school that way, ;). So wonderful to see you Lillian, as always your insight and comments are so appreciated. And, I know what you mean, something brings me back to this lovely community time and time again and I’m always so grateful for these lovely connections — people, like you, that give a big welcome. Thank you and your words of wisdom are missed! >

      Posted by Brigitte | December 12, 2015, 1:09 pm
  10. Hello there! I’ve been away for a few months, too. I have a post in mind “what I did besides blogging”, but I haven’t gotten around to writing it yet 🙂 Blogging is such a habit for me, and when I fall off the wagon, I fall hard.

    I grew up in a small town in central Florida, but my mom was from a tiny TINY town in North Carolina, and whenever we’d go visit my grandparents, I always learned new vernacular! “Over yonder” is one of my favorites. I’ve also started watching a few British murder mysteries and cooking shows, and I absolutely adore how we can speak the same language, but have completely different phrases. Recently I heard, “get a wiggle on” as in – to hurry up, go faster. I might have to integrate that into my own personal vernacular!

    Posted by Erin E. | December 13, 2015, 5:54 pm
    • Hi Erin,

      It’s hard to leave and to come back, isn’t it? I think to myself: I should just stop!

      And then I come back. I think it’s the connection thing and when I do post, seeing awesome people, like you, taking the time out of their day to read and comment. Thank you, Erin.

      Wow, over yonder is an oldy but a goody. My grandparents said the same though I know a decade generation separates us (or more?). It’s good you brought up the English vernacular, as I sit watching “Love Actually” (one of the best Christmas movies EVER) and I love the dialect so much. I love that expression “get a wiggle on” and now I am, from this day forward using it. That is a good one, my friend, and thank you for adding to my dialect and vernacular.



      Posted by Brigitte | December 13, 2015, 6:05 pm
      • Every year, my husband and I watch Love Actually the day after Thanksgiving – it’s our “start of Christmas” tradition! Even though I’ve seen it at least a dozen times, the end always makes me cry like a baby (in a good, “I’m so happy” way).

        Posted by Erin E. | December 18, 2015, 10:26 am
      • Same here, Erin. The music in that movie is perfect.


        Posted by Brigitte | December 18, 2015, 11:05 am
  11. Castigate and condemn come to mind as other C words, although they’re not very nice things to do. 😉

    I definitely do not know the “etiquette” of texting. In fact, I didn’t even know there was one. But I rarely use acronyms—more like full sentences. So my texts tend to be longer than most. Of course, I’m drawing a blank on my own idioms, but my husband, who grew up near Green Bay, sometimes uses “borrow me” in the sense of “lend.” As in, “Could you borrow me a quarter?” I think it’s probably a too-literal translation from the Walloon-speaking Belgians who settled in the area in the 1840s and 1850s….

    Great to see a post from you Brigitte! I wish you and your family a wonderful Christmas and New Year!

    Posted by jmmcdowell | December 15, 2015, 7:25 pm
  12. I have never heard tump before in my life, and now I can’t wait to.

    Posted by Jay | December 16, 2015, 2:01 pm
  13. Welcome back, thus good to see you back on the posting stomp … and a toast to another person who uses sarcasm that others really don’t understand. … Clink! That pharmacy sign made me laugh, but your opening use of the V wasn’t far because I fell for it. But, bless your heart for your wit.

    Posted by aFrankAngle | December 18, 2015, 8:11 am
    • Hi Frank — always nice to see you here! I’ll accept your toast. The pharmacy sign is no longer there but I was quick to snap a pic. Sometimes you run across something that makes you think: What were they thinking??!! And, bless your heart back for embracing my sarcasm. ;). >

      Posted by Brigitte | December 18, 2015, 8:48 am
  14. Hi B! Sorry I didn’t get to this sooner! I’m with you all the way. You are correct that penmanship is not taught in schools anymore, many children/teens don’t know how to write in cursive. Last week, after some back and forth, I texted my daughter “Thx”. And if I had bothered to look at my phone, which I seldom do, I would have seen that she replied, “are you mad at me?” WHAT? It’s all a low down dirty shame.

    Merry Christmas! xo mags

    Posted by Maggie O'C | December 21, 2015, 1:22 pm
    • Hey Mags! How the heck are you? Wonderful I hope. Yeah those short texts can be misunderstood. The one that’s sticks in my craw (how’s that for vernacular) when you text someone and they just reply back “K”. Grrrr. It IS a low down dirty shame girlfriend. Merry Christmas to you and yours Maggie and that you. 😃


      Posted by Brigitte | December 21, 2015, 3:52 pm

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