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We’ve all heard them … clichés that leave you head-scratching, but that when broken down, they actually make good sense. We asked some of our favorite Southerners — young and old, native and new — to share their most treasured, oft-used, funny and just plain weird clichés, and we’re happy to share them with you. So Annie, bar the door! Here are 100+ clichés we love!


100+ Clichés Southerners Love to Say

  1. You’re as lost as last year’s Easter eggs.
  2. Slower than molasses
  3. Hold your horses!
  4. Can’t never could
  5. Good Lord willing and the creek don’t rise
  6. Busy as a bee
  7. Fit as a fiddle
  8. Ain’t got the good sense God gave a goat
  9. A couple cans short of a six-pack
  10. Screw is loose
  11. Lights are on but nobody’s home
  12. Madder than a wet hen
  13. As funny as a fart in a spacesuit
  14. That’s a face only a mother could love.
  15. Her backside looks like two cats fighting in a sack.
  16. Don’t let the door hit ya’ where the good Lord split ya’.
  17. Tend to your own knitting.
  18. Rode hard and put away wet
  19. Why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free?
  20. She’s off like a herd of turtles.
  21. Don’t get above your raisin’.
  22. Let the cat out of the bag
  23. Like a fox in a henhouse
  24. Busy as a one-armed paper hanger
  25. Pig in a poke
  26. Barking up the wrong tree
  27. Nervous as a long-tail cat in a room full of rocking chairs
  28. Playing possum
  29. Running with the big dogs
  30. Can’t make a silk purse from a sow’s ear
  31. Useful as tits on a bull
  32. Short end of the stick
  33. Flew right over my head
  34. All that and a bag of chips
  35. Stuck like a hair in a biscuit
  36. Katie bar the door.
  37. Even a blind pig gets an acorn every now and then.
  38. One in the hand is worth two in the bush
  39. If you get a wild hair …
  40. Don’t rest on your laurels.
  41. Come hell or high water
  42. When push comes to shove …
  43. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.
  44. Dead as a doornail
  45. Knee high to a grasshopper
  46. Til the cows come home
  47. Enough to piss off the pope
  48. Like taking candy from a baby
  49. Make hay while the sun still shines.
  50. Idle hands are the Devil’s workshop.
  51. A penny saved is a penny earned.
  52. A stitch in time saves nine.
  53. A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush.
  54. Let sleeping dogs lie.
  55. Fences should be horse high, pig tight and bull strong
  56. That’s like closing the barn door after the horse got out
  57. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it
  58. Don’t put all your eggs in one basket.
  59. Don’t count your chickens before they hatch.
  60. Separate the wheat from the chaff.
  61. Don’t change horses in midstream.
  62. The cream always rises to the top.
  63. You need a hair of the dog that bit you.
  64. Many hands make light work.
  65. She doesn’t know if she’s washing or hanging.
  66. Early to bed, early to rise makes a man healthy, wealthy and wise.
  67. Birds of a feather flock together.
  68. You can catch more flies with honey.
  69. Strike while the iron is hot.
  70. Don’t bite the hand that feeds you.
  71. No bigger than a minnow in a fishing pond
  72. You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make him drink.
  73. It’s always the darkest before the dawn.
  74. Heavens to Betsy!
  75. You can’t teach an old dog new tricks.
  76. Where there’s smoke there’s fire.
  77. An idle mind is the devil’s plaything.
  78. The pen is mightier than the sword.
  79. A penny saved is a penny earned.
  80. Two’s company, three’s a crowd.
  81. Kill two birds with one stone.
  82. Better safe than sorry.
  83. There’s no time like the present.
  84. Ignorance is bliss.
  85. She’s a brick shy of a load.
  86. Ain’t got a pot to piss in
  87. Hotter than two mice screwing in a wool sock
  88. Naked as a jay bird
  89. Colder than a well digger’s a$$
  90. Raining cats and dogs
  91. Does a bear poop in the woods?
  92. Does the pope wear a funny hat?
  93. Your eyes are bigger than your stomach.
  94. She’s on you like white on rice.
  95. I’m gonna knock you clear into next week.
  96. You look like death eatin’ a cracker.
  97. As far as the crow flies.
  98. A stone’s throw.
  99. You’re too big for your britches.
  100. What doesn’t kill you makes you stronger.
  101. Love is blind.
  102. You can’t judge a book by its cover.
  103. The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.
  104. The grass is always greener on the other side of the fence.
  105. He ain’t dealing from a full deck.
  106. That’s 10 gallons of lard in a five gallon bucket.
  107. That dog won’t hunt.
  108. It don’t amount to a hill of beans
  109. He’s got more money than Carter’s got liver pills
  110. Man, I am worn slap out.
  111. She looks like five miles of bad road.
  112. I was in some high cotton.
  113. I wouldn’t give him air if he was in a bottle.
  114. She couldn’t carry a tune in a bucket.
  115. He fell out of the ugly tree and hit every limb on the way down.
  116. He’s not the sharpest knife in the drawer.
  117. He’s all hat and no cattle
  118. We are eating high on the hog tonight.
  119. It’ll stick to your ribs.
  120. Happier than a puppy with two peters
  121. Madder than a bulldog sh*tting tacks
  122. Don’t cut off your nose to spite your face.
  123. Go around your ass to get to your elbow


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