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Folklore: Expression - a peck of dirt

theleveller 20 Jun 08 - 06:54 AM
Catherine Jayne 20 Jun 08 - 06:57 AM
kendall 20 Jun 08 - 06:58 AM
Paul Burke 20 Jun 08 - 07:33 AM
Wyrd Sister 20 Jun 08 - 07:49 AM
McGrath of Harlow 20 Jun 08 - 08:57 AM
jacqui.c 20 Jun 08 - 09:02 AM
Mr Happy 20 Jun 08 - 09:15 AM
Uncle_DaveO 20 Jun 08 - 09:28 AM
Marilyn 20 Jun 08 - 09:31 AM
Mrrzy 20 Jun 08 - 09:43 AM
PoppaGator 20 Jun 08 - 12:56 PM
kendall 20 Jun 08 - 03:56 PM
PoppaGator 20 Jun 08 - 04:41 PM
kendall 20 Jun 08 - 08:11 PM
topical tom 20 Jun 08 - 08:25 PM
Joe_F 20 Jun 08 - 08:34 PM
Kent Davis 20 Jun 08 - 09:54 PM
GUEST,Arkie 20 Jun 08 - 10:49 PM
Liz the Squeak 21 Jun 08 - 02:43 AM
kendall 21 Jun 08 - 06:45 AM
GUEST,leeneia 21 Jun 08 - 10:19 AM
mack/misophist 22 Jun 08 - 09:17 AM
frogprince 22 Jun 08 - 12:31 PM
TRUBRIT 22 Jun 08 - 02:57 PM
greg stephens 22 Jun 08 - 03:19 PM
kendall 22 Jun 08 - 03:34 PM
jacqui.c 22 Jun 08 - 03:34 PM
kendall 22 Jun 08 - 03:37 PM
GUEST,Tom Franke 22 Jun 08 - 03:53 PM
Michael 22 Jun 08 - 04:25 PM
frogprince 22 Jun 08 - 04:39 PM
McGrath of Harlow 22 Jun 08 - 06:58 PM
JennieG 22 Jun 08 - 08:02 PM
Kent Davis 22 Jun 08 - 09:24 PM
Gurney 22 Jun 08 - 10:59 PM
Liz the Squeak 23 Jun 08 - 07:20 AM
Bryn Pugh 23 Jun 08 - 10:36 AM
Skivee 23 Jun 08 - 12:00 PM
PoppaGator 23 Jun 08 - 12:26 PM
PoppaGator 23 Jun 08 - 12:40 PM
jeffp 23 Jun 08 - 02:31 PM
Skivee 23 Jun 08 - 05:39 PM
semi-submersible 24 Jun 08 - 05:42 AM
GUEST,leeneia 24 Jun 08 - 11:54 AM
Uncle_DaveO 24 Jun 08 - 12:08 PM
Uncle_DaveO 24 Jun 08 - 12:20 PM
Uncle_DaveO 24 Jun 08 - 08:59 PM
TRUBRIT 25 Jun 08 - 12:07 AM
GUEST,CrazyEddie 25 Jun 08 - 09:04 AM
GUEST,David 11 Jun 09 - 07:05 PM
GUEST,Lighter 11 Jun 09 - 07:51 PM
Joe_F 11 Jun 09 - 09:17 PM
Songster Bob 12 Jun 09 - 12:13 AM
semi-submersible 12 Jun 09 - 04:53 AM
IanC 12 Jun 09 - 05:02 AM
GUEST,Ainslie in Adelaide 21 Mar 12 - 03:46 AM
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Subject: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: theleveller
Date: 20 Jun 08 - 06:54 AM

My grandmother used to say to us, as children, usually when we found a bit of soil left on vegetables, 'We must all eat a peck of dirt before we die'. A peck is an old measure of volume equal to a bushel, 2 gallons or 554.8 cu. ins (UK measurements). Has anyone else heard this expression; does anyone know where it originates and why this precise measurement was chosen?

Moved to Folklore category.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Catherine Jayne
Date: 20 Jun 08 - 06:57 AM

My sons Nana uses the phrase but I don't know where it comes from or the reasonings.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: kendall
Date: 20 Jun 08 - 06:58 AM

Actually, a peck is a quarter of a bushel.
That is an old saying in Maine, and I always thought it means simply that you can not avoid consuming some dirt along with your food.
One tends to question it when they fnd a roach in their oatmeal, or a mouse in their Coke. Are you listening, Sinsull?


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Paul Burke
Date: 20 Jun 08 - 07:33 AM

The saying originated when someone was observed to eat a peck of dirt, upon which he immediately died.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Wyrd Sister
Date: 20 Jun 08 - 07:49 AM

Yes - a peck o' muck. Derivation unknown.
Some early quotes here . And does this make it a music thread?


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 20 Jun 08 - 08:57 AM

I wouldn't worry about the precise measurements. But the principle underlying it is widely recognised. There appear to be real dangers to the developing immune system in too much elimination of dirt and such on the lives of children. For example.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: jacqui.c
Date: 20 Jun 08 - 09:02 AM

Too true Kevin - that's what I've always understood to be the meaning of that saying, which was quite common in my family circle.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Mr Happy
Date: 20 Jun 08 - 09:15 AM

Peter Piper picked a peck o' pickled peppers!


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 20 Jun 08 - 09:28 AM

In the 30s and 40s, my grandmother (if some food fell on the floor) would pick it up, brush it off, and say, "You've got to eat a peck of dirt before you die." Southern Minnesota.

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Marilyn
Date: 20 Jun 08 - 09:31 AM

Very common expression where I come from too (Lancashire)

McGrath of Harlow said "There appear to be real dangers to the developing immune system in too much elimination of dirt and such on the lives of children"

This is how my mother explained the saying to me too and, FWIW, I agree.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Mrrzy
Date: 20 Jun 08 - 09:43 AM

Yes, I've heard it...


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: PoppaGator
Date: 20 Jun 08 - 12:56 PM

The way I heard it, you're supposed to eat a peck of dirt a year. That'll definitely keep your immune system in practice!

I learned this from an old farmer, being squeezed out of his life's work (and his rented acreage) by the suburban sprawl taking over his formerly-rural part of central New Jersey back in the early '60s. As a young teenager, I went off to work for/with him each day for part of a summer, and I suppose I was too-visibly horrified by the, er, unsanitary conditions under which we broke for lunch. Mr. Schott chided me by quoting his version of this old expression, which allowed for a heck of a lot more dirt-consumption than the one-peck-per-lifetime version.

There a word for dirt-eating, but I'm afraid I forgot it. I rememer reading, sometime back in the 80s, about an African dirt-eating tradition still common in rural Mississippi, where certain ribvertbanks noted for the gustatory quality of the clay attracted dirt-eaters from miles around. The story also noted that dirt-eaters without access to good-enough supplies of the proper kind of earth would make do with some other substance ~ laundry starch, if I'm not mistaken.

A peck is definitely smaller than a bushel. When I was a kid, fruit came in baskets which could be seen at grocery stores, etc. I don't know if kids today ever get a change to see 'em. A bushel basket is wide and stout, more-or-less tub-shaped, and commonly used for apples. The smaller and narrower peck basket was commonly known as a "peach basket"; this is the type and size of basket used by James Naismith at the YMCA Training Center in Sprinfield, MA when he invented basketball; the current-day net hung from a basketball is still roughly the size and shape of such a peach basket, and gives an idea of how much volume is represented by a peck.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: kendall
Date: 20 Jun 08 - 03:56 PM

When I was a teen ager back home we used to dig and sell clams. A bushel weighs 60 pounds, a half bushel 30 pounds and a peck, 15 pounds.

The hogshead is a bit less precise, in Maine it is 17 and 1/2 bushels. There are still many archaic terms in our local dialect which we inherited from our English ancestors.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: PoppaGator
Date: 20 Jun 08 - 04:41 PM

In most cases, I'm pretty sure, bushels and pecks have always been measurements of volume, not weight.

Of course, when measuring a given commodity (like clams), a given volume will have a consistent weight. I have no doubt that a bushel of clams would always weight the same amount, in this case 60 pounds ~ but a bushel of, say, potatoes would weigh in at some other number of pounds...


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: kendall
Date: 20 Jun 08 - 08:11 PM

"A pint a pound the world around"


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: topical tom
Date: 20 Jun 08 - 08:25 PM

My parents used to say "Oh, oh!He(or she) is in a peck of trouble now!"


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Joe_F
Date: 20 Jun 08 - 08:34 PM

8 quarts make a peck, 4 pecks make a bushel. Dry measure (that is, volume, but of solids rather than liquids).

When I was a boy, we learned such things in school.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Kent Davis
Date: 20 Jun 08 - 09:54 PM

Poppagator,

The word you're looking for is "geophagia". If the dirt-eating is a manifestation of mental illness, it could also be called "pica":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pica_(disorder)
In Haiti, however, it could be called "survival": http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/22902512/




Kent


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: GUEST,Arkie
Date: 20 Jun 08 - 10:49 PM

I heard the expression as a youth in the Tidewater section of Virginia. In elementary school in the 1940s we were taught about pecks as a unit of measurement but it was not in practical use. I supposed it had been actually used in former times when the expression was coined.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 21 Jun 08 - 02:43 AM

I'm horrified when I see a certain work colleague spray her desk daily with antibacterial cleaner, complain about the state of the kitchen and spend longer washing her hands than the average brain surgeon... She is the same colleague who catches every cold, cough, tummy upset and virus going, and in an office of 60 people, that's a lot of germs!

So if soil eating is geophagia, what is worm eating called? What ever it is, that's my sister.

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: kendall
Date: 21 Jun 08 - 06:45 AM

I also learned about such measures in school, then I used them as a clam digger too.

Many people don't know that using this new anti bacterial soap also kills the beneficial bacteria.
I once asked my Doctor how he says healthy when he is surrounded by sick people every day, and his answer was, "I wash my hands frequently".
So do I, and I almost never have a cold. However, I don't use that anti-bacterial stuff.

Have you seen that tv commercial with the woman rubbing raw chicken all over the kitchen? It makes me cringe! Seeing a cat on the counter or table does the same thing. They scuff around in a filthy litter box then they transfer their microbes all over the area where food is prepared.
YUK


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 21 Jun 08 - 10:19 AM

For the folklorists: my grandmother used this saying. She was from Colorado, born about 1900. The saying certainly seems to be widespread.

Kendall, I don't watch TV. Please explain about the commercial where the woman rubs raw chicken all over the kitchen. What's it advertising?

I agree with you about cats on the counters. (My own cat is a perfect lady who never gets on the counters.)


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: mack/misophist
Date: 22 Jun 08 - 09:17 AM

I never checked for accuracy, but when I was little everybody said the saying came from the bible. Proverbs, perhaps.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: frogprince
Date: 22 Jun 08 - 12:31 PM

Grew up in southern Minnesota, and always heard the expression; I always figured it was at least partly metaphorical, for having to put up with "whatever" throughout life. The apple orchard a few miles from us still sells little peck baskets of apples.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: TRUBRIT
Date: 22 Jun 08 - 02:57 PM

My mum certainly used this expression.

The over emphasis on hygiene at the moment - to the detriment of all else - seems silly. In our neighborhood there is a beach near my home and dogs are allowed on it from May to October from 6 - 9 am and from 6 - 9 pm -- the rest of the year they can be on all the time. There is a huge push to ban the dogs entirely because they are 'dirty' and they pee on the beach. But if you ban the dogs, what happens to cat pee, fish fee, and seagull pee. If the folks who indicated they won't take their children on the beach because dogs are allowed on it choose to take their kids to the park -- who do they think was playing on the grass before the kids -- Yup! the dogs.........and they probably peed once or twice before....

You can't sanitize the world......


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: greg stephens
Date: 22 Jun 08 - 03:19 PM

In my family it was a bushel, not a peck, and you had your whole life to achieve this, not just a year.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: kendall
Date: 22 Jun 08 - 03:34 PM

Guest leeneia, the scene is a kitchen and the woman has a raw chicken leg, and she is rubbing it all over the kitchen as if she were using soap and water. It's disgusting.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: jacqui.c
Date: 22 Jun 08 - 03:34 PM

the advert Kendall mentioned is for some kind of anti-bacterial kitchen cleaner, I think - we never really pay much attention to the products. I must admit that advert makes me feel a little queasy but so does the idea that a totally germ free environment is desirable.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: kendall
Date: 22 Jun 08 - 03:37 PM

Trubrit, how about the grumpy old git in a restaurant who didn't know what he wanted. The waitress suggested the special, tongue, and he said "Hell no! I don't want nothin' that came out of an animal's mouth."
She replied, "Then how about some fresh eggs?"
It's all perspective.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: GUEST,Tom Franke
Date: 22 Jun 08 - 03:53 PM

Ozark saying: "I love you a bushel and a peck and a hug around the neck."


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Michael
Date: 22 Jun 08 - 04:25 PM

As we said in Boser (Derbyshire) when I were a kid "Tha's got t'ate a peck o' muck afore tha' dees"

Mike


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: frogprince
Date: 22 Jun 08 - 04:39 PM

I love you a bushel and a peck
A bushel and a peck and a hug around the neck
A hug around the neck and a barrel and a heap
A barrel and a heap and I'm talkin' in my sleep
About you, about you
'Cause I love you a bushel and a peck
You bet your purdy neck I do

A doodle-oodle-ooh-doo
A-doodle-oodle-oodle-ooh-doo

I love you a bushel and a peck
A bushel and a peck though you make my heart a wreck
Make my heart a wreck and you make my life a mess
Make my life a mess, yes a mess of happiness
About you, about you
'Cause I love you a bushel and a peck
You bet your purdy neck I do

A doodle-oodle-ooh-doo
A-doodle-oodle-oodle-ooh-doo

I love you a bushel and a peck
A bushel and a peck and it beats me all to heck
It beats me all to heck, how I'll ever tend the farm
Ever tend the farm when I wanna keep my arm
About you, about you
'Cause I love you a bushel and a peck
You bet your purdy neck I do

A doodle-oodle-ooh-doo
A-doodle-oodle-oodle-ooh-doo
A-doodle-oodle-oodle-ooh-doo
A-doodle-oodle-ooh-doo-doo


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 22 Jun 08 - 06:58 PM

The idea being that if you rub the chicken leg on the kitchen surfaces it'll get too dirty to eat?


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: JennieG
Date: 22 Jun 08 - 08:02 PM

I've heard the expression here in Oz too - our ex-next door neighbour used it 15-20 years ago, and I seem to remember also hearing it when my sons (now 29 and 32) were small. I'm not sure I remember it from my own childhood though.

Expressions spread far and wide, don't they!

Cheers
Jennie


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Kent Davis
Date: 22 Jun 08 - 09:24 PM

mack/misophist,

This proverb does not come from the Bible.

Kent


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Gurney
Date: 22 Jun 08 - 10:59 PM

That settles it, it is all over the English-speaking world.

Now, does it mean that you have to eat a peck of muck in your lifetime,
or that a peck of muck will only kill you if eaten at one sitting, so anything less is comparatively harmless.

A question that I pondered whilst sitting at my nan's kitchen table.

Another one. Why did nearly everything she cooked smell of onions?


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 23 Jun 08 - 07:20 AM

It's one of those unanswerable questions, like, when I throw up, why are there always tomoto chunks, even though I've not eaten a tomato for 40 years?

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Bryn Pugh
Date: 23 Jun 08 - 10:36 AM

LtS - sure it isn't carrots :-) ?


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Skivee
Date: 23 Jun 08 - 12:00 PM

Well, Poppagator, to amplify on Kent Davis's comment, the eating of dirt may be geophagia, but the genaric term is Pica.
It is a bizarre medical condition that is charictorized by the persistant ingestion of various non-food substances; including dirt, chalk, clay, and/or feces. There is some speculation that it is a primal response to the body's perception that it is in need of some mineral substance lacking in the person's diet.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: PoppaGator
Date: 23 Jun 08 - 12:26 PM

"Ozark saying: "I love you a bushel and a peck and a hug around the neck."

To my knowledge, that phrase is a quote from the song frogprince quoted in its entirety, which I'm pretty sure came from a 1940s Broadway musical comedy ~ a far cry from the backwoods of the Ozark mountains.

Now, perhaps the librettist/lyricist didn't originate the phrase, but picked it up from someone who knew it from back home in Arkansas. On the other hand, it's not at all impossible that GUEST Tom Franke's Ozark "source" heard this song, very popular in its heyday, on the radio.

************************

"Pica" refers to the eating of any non-food substance, not only dirt. One of my sons earned the nickname "Pica Boy" as a toddler when he chewed on every piece of wooden furniture he could reach. (We learned the term from our pediatrician.)

We still have bookshelves with toothmarks on the lower shelves, those which were right at the height of his mouth while he was going through this stage.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: PoppaGator
Date: 23 Jun 08 - 12:40 PM

I just Googled the song title "I Love You a Bushel and a Peck," and learned that it was written by Frank Loesser for the musical "Guys and Dolls."

Many of the first two pages of Googles hits refer to a children's book wherein the song lyrics are accompanied by illustations of a loving family of cute little ducks. Frank Loesser is credited as "author," but I'm sure that the illustator had the idea and put the book package together.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: jeffp
Date: 23 Jun 08 - 02:31 PM

In the commercial Kendall cited, the voiceover while the woman is cleaning her counters with the leg quarter is to the effect of, "If you are reusing a sponge to clean your counters, you might as well be doing this." It's an advertisement for Lysol antibacterial wipes.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Skivee
Date: 23 Jun 08 - 05:39 PM

A bit of thread drift Re: Jeffp's post:
My favorite pathagen paranoia ad of this kind show a bunch of slimey, filthy brats runnig over to pound on the family piano. The keys then bloom a batch of germs complete with anthropomorphic cartoon bacteria, complete with gnashy teeth and eye stalks.
Mom gives them a "oh, you cute scampy kids" looks then hoses down the keyboard with an antibacterial spray (Clorox?).
G'aaaaaaah!
Later versions of the ad had little tiny letters at the bottom of the screen advising you to follow your piano makers cleaning instructions.
G'aaaaaah!


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: semi-submersible
Date: 24 Jun 08 - 05:42 AM

When someone dropped a morsel on a reasonably clean floor, my family would say, "We all eat a peck of dirt before we die; better get started!"

Maureen on the west coast of Canada


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 24 Jun 08 - 11:54 AM

Soap advertisers have figured out that you can really make people afraid of threats that are invisible. (Same applies to so-called organic foods.)

The thing to do is to concentrate on what your senses tell you. Some families have bad habits and the result is food poisoning. If family members get bouts of diarrhea, 'flu' when nobody else has the flu, or 'bugs' (as in 'He got a bug from somewhere,) then it's time to research what makes a clean kitchen and do something about it.

We use sponges, but they get rinsed and nuked for one minute frequently. They also go into the dishwasher with the dishes.

The people with the kids would be far better off making sure their children wash their hands after pooping than by spraying the world. But then, supervising the kids takes real time and real interaction, and Clorox is so fast, impersonal, and efficient.


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 24 Jun 08 - 12:08 PM

Gurney wondered about his Nan:

Why did nearly everything she cooked smell of onions?

Because she was an excellent cook!

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 24 Jun 08 - 12:20 PM

In Army basic training camp, fifty-some years ago, where we healthy teen and early-twenties young men were being run ragged and worked to death (we thought), we also never felt we got enough to eat.

So if you were, say, out on bivouac and dropped some food on the ground, in the mud or dust, what we said was, "Good thing it fell on a piece of paper!" as we picked it up, wiped it off, and ate it. None of us died of food poisoning or "the galloping galumph". What we feared was starvation.

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 24 Jun 08 - 08:59 PM

That last one, about the Army, reminds me of this, that's told about the US Army in North Africa in the Second World War:

A newcomer transferred into a unit in Algeria talked with a fellow who'd been there for six months, and complained about the omnipresent clouds of flies, flies, flies, getting into everything--food and drink included.

The "old timer" said, "Well, your attitude can change about that. In fact you can tell how long a guy's been here by how he takes the damn flies."

"How so?" says the newbie.

"When a new replacement gets here, he's drinking a beer and a fly gets in it, he throws out the beer in disgust.

"After he's been here a month and a fly gets in his beer, he picks the fly out, throws it away, and drinks the beer.

"After he's been here three months and a fly gets in the beer, he takes the fly out of the beer, wrings the beer out of it over his mug, throws the fly away, and drinks the beer.

"After he's been here four months, he catches flies and puts them in his beer!"

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: TRUBRIT
Date: 25 Jun 08 - 12:07 AM

Exunckly!!!!!


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Subject: RE: BS: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: GUEST,CrazyEddie
Date: 25 Jun 08 - 09:04 AM

So, Uncle DaveO,
how long has he been there if he picks out the fly, holds it oveer the beer, and shouts "Spit it out ye bastard!" ?


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: GUEST,David
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 07:05 PM

I understood it to mean, we all have to be humbled, and to suffer a share of tribulations, in our life, and we're fools to think we'll be spared.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 07:51 PM

The story I heard was that after he was "out here" long enough, he'd start talking to himself. In the far worse stage, he'd start talking to rocks. In the final stage, he'd shut up and just listen while the rocks talked.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Joe_F
Date: 11 Jun 09 - 09:17 PM

David: I, on the contrary, took it to mean that it doesn't pay to be fussy about cleanliness.


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: Songster Bob
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 12:13 AM

"The idea being that if you rub the chicken leg on the kitchen surfaces it'll get too dirty to eat?"

I don't know if that's what they're implying, but raw chicken is one of the very worst things you can put on a surface you're going to put other food onto, I can tell you that. The point isn't that the chicken will get dirty if the counter isn't clean, it's that the counter will be rife with really dangerous germs once it's been rubbed with raw chicken meat.

Bob


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: semi-submersible
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 04:53 AM

A relative of mine buys dirt imported from France to eat as a food supplement. "Homeostatic soil organisms" sound a lot like snake oil to me: they don't need to do any good, if they sound convincing enough to sell anyway. Show me peer-reviewed proof.

Songster Bob, d'ye think by any chance you just had your drumstick pulled?

Sounds like the chicken ad aimed to disgust and alarm, though it's a valid point it raised about the sort of cross-contamination you can get from a perennial kitchen sponge.

Sure, frogprince and David, if you're looking for life lessons, dirt in your spuds may teach you an attitude of acceptance and humility, but I've never sensed metaphor in the "peck of dirt" saying. A humorously exaggerated quantification of the practical limits of hygeine, it's the culinary equivalent of "You win some, you lose some," or "Momma told me there'd be days like this."


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: IanC
Date: 12 Jun 09 - 05:02 AM

It's clear from the context in our family at any rate that it's to do with eating dirt on food. Not to be too fussy about how well washed something is etc.

:-)


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Subject: RE: Folklore: Expression - a peck of dirt
From: GUEST,Ainslie in Adelaide
Date: 21 Mar 12 - 03:46 AM

Hi folk,

A friend in Australia has asked me for a meaning of the expression

But their ancient way of driving/Quite of my peck licks me.

I'm darned if I can come up with a meaning which seems to fit in with the quote.

Can anyone else throw more light on this one?
Cheers
Ainslie.


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