Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Long Lost Words

I used "grig" the other day when talking to the grandgirl. I had to explain it.

I'm always astonished when these old words pop out of me to the bafflement of my listeners.

My mother used the word "grig" a lot. With a houseful of boys and a lone girl for years and years her plaintive cry was: "Would you stop grigging each other?" The woman craved peace.

Here is the definition:

Grig

To slag or goad

"Stop griggin' me or I'll bate you"

"Bate" in that context is "beat".

Another one is

"ball-hopping". This activity usually happens around the dinner table, when someone will throw out a controversial topic bound to get another's goat and irritate them to the point of explosion. Only later will they realize they've been baited for the table's entertainment.

Ball-hopper

A person who insults or makes a statements to gain a reaction

"He really hopped de ball last night"

13 comments:

  1. I've seen a lot of ball-hopping in my time. When people ask me about my vegetarianism, and ask me if I miss the taste of meat, I always wonder if they're genuinely curious or just trying to wind me up.

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  2. Nick:
    My father had a classic. Most of his adult kids were ex-smokers and he loved saying that the diesel fumes from the buses when were were out running carried more cancer than all our smoking ever did.
    Boy would that get us all fired up, much to his later amusement.
    XO
    WWW

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  3. Grigging and ball hopping - love 'em both.

    I guess my own post of today could be described as 'goading' or 'grigging'. :)

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  4. I think it too factual for that - but an excellent post my dear!!
    XO
    WWW

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  5. I love when you remind us of these old words. I suppose every family has their own language.

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  6. Grigging is new to me. Also ball-hopping. But I'll use them now.

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  7. Both new to me - good ones though.
    It'd be quite impossible to translate them, without a go-between native Irish person.
    :-)

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  8. GM:
    Well at least the provinces had their own idioms and dialects, I think there is an actual Corkspeak dictionary!!
    XO
    WWW

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  9. BWT:
    Very usable words, I use ball-hopping (with translation) quite a bit here. :)
    XO
    WWW

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  10. T:
    A lot of these Irish idioms don't translate well at all :)
    I'm sure you could teach us all a few Yorkshire dialect words!!
    XO
    WWW

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  11. Fascinating! I can relate to the Ball-hopper. My father is one not only at the dining table, but also permanently!

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  12. R:

    He is not "going quietly into that good night".

    Mine didn't either.

    I think I'm the same.

    XO
    WWW

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