Cat Terminology and Old-Country Sayings

by pjmcbride


(in no order whatsoever)

bone in one’s leg: excuse not to do something. As in, “I’d do it, but I’ve got a bone in my leg.” Buys you time until they figure out you’re full of it.

cat-o-plasm: what cats are made of. A viscous substance which fully liquefies with increasing heat. The room temperature can be determined by observing the degree of curled-up vs. stretched-out in feline bodies.

flug (alternate spelling: pflug, derivation: Crowley family): a fuzzy piece of indeterminate material, usually found attached to one’s clothes, as in, “You’ve got a flug on your sleeve.” See screwpinkie.

screwpinkie (alternate pronunciation/spelling: shcrewpinkie, derivation: Crowley family): a threadlike piece of indeterminate material, as in, “Let me get that screwpinkie off the edge of your sleeve.” Care must be exercised in removing screwpinkies, as they sometimes lead to unraveling.

schlook (derivation: Crowley family, probably originally from Yiddish via radio advertising executives): a swallow of a beverage for testing or measuring purposes, as in, “Take a schlook and see how you like it,” or, “Take a schlook out of that glass so I can empty this milk bottle.”

breeding a scab (derivation: Rom via the Old Country): like “cruisin’ for a bruisin’,” engaging in activity likely to lead to assault. For example, Esmerelda the little cat frequently provokes Glamour the big cat, and we say she’s “tending her scab ranch.”

scolex, borax, addendum (derivation: the three parts of insect bodies–head, thorax, abdomen): the three parts of cat bodies, most clearly demonstrated when the cat is sitting with its back to you.

covering with opprobrium: the act of throwing the covers over a playful cat which has jumped on the bed. Often followed by a blanket party: putting the other cat on the bed outside the covers, and then watching the wacky fun which ensues. (Derivation: Old Hillbilly custom of putting someone in a sack, after which others beat said person with ball bats.)

appapriation: throwing a large crumpled sheet of paper over said cat.

valleybilly: like a hillbilly, but resides or originates in the Ohio Valley or similar low-lying, a/k/a low-life area.

I will add more of these as I think of them. Thanks to Nick for inspiring this post by staring at me blankly when I told him he was breeding a scab.