Cephalogenic

or, stuff that I dragged out of my head

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Location: Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Cock of the Walk


Today I've got an expression I'm guessing you've never heard before. Maybe you have: maybe you get around. But it's such an oddity!

According to the Urban Dictionary (to which, you should keep in mind, anyone can contribute, like Wikipedia with looser quality control), the expression "cock for dolly" means "a perfect fit, or especially appropriate". I trust I don't have to explain why it would mean this.

But I first heard it in Newfoundland, where it has an even more specific and literal meaning (one which doesn't preclude its use as a metaphor, as far as I know). I used to play cards a lot with a group of friends, and often we'd go over to one particular friend's house, where her mother--a wonderfully cool old broad, a description I think she would have embraced--would join in. And whenever you played a queen to a trick which she could then take with a king, this cool mom would invariably say (and I wish I could duplicate her delivery of this line), "I've got just the cock for your dolly."

Well, how much more literal can you get?

She didn't appropriate it herself: my mother (born and bred in Newfoundland) also knew the expression when I used it during a game of euchre a few years back. "Cock for dolly", therefore, means "a king that beats a queen in a trick-taking card game". Don't tell me you can't find some sort of use for that, sooner or later.

Jim had never heard the phrase when I once used it, but he was so taken by it that he immediately dubbed our handcart the cockfordolly, all one word. (Yes, we have our own handcart--we used to move a lot, for job reasons--and yes, I know that a dolly and a handcart aren't the same thing. It's still hilarious.)

1 Comments:

Blogger Jim (the Canuck One) said...

There. I've setup an account so I comment on the post. But, it took so bloody long to sign in, I've forgetten what I wanted to say.

Oh, yes. Please assure your gentle readers that I, too, know the difference between a dolly and a handcart. I've been under a car or two in my time and can assure any curious soul that a handcart would be no help in that situation.

Carry on.

Sunday, October 22, 2006 7:39:00 PM  

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