It’s been so hot here, the sap rising from the porch floor boards, the paint’s cracked and is threatening to curl up and die. And if there was a chicken trying to cross the hot pavement on the road- I can just about guarantee that she’d be hopscotching or flopping trying to get to the other side…when she’d collapse in a bonafide sinking spell! My grandmother had a barometer on her wall for just such occasions when thunder and lightening threatened to break the heat by throwing a big storm or wind and rain- just to cool things off… she’d always blame such maladies like Sinking Spells on the barometric pressure among other things… I hope you enjoy this piece I wrote a few summers ago about this very subject! Love y’all and stay cool…

Camellia's Cottage

vintage woman on fainting couchSouthern Ladies are known for vague conditions and symptoms, like Sinking Spells. We’re not looking for medical terms or specifics. We prefer eccentric descriptive health conditions like:

  • Having a Come Apart, Being in a Fog, In a Rigor
  • Suffering from the Change of Seasons, a Crying Jag or being absolutely Mortified
  • Wasting Away, Catching a Chill or In a State of Abject Horror
  • Being covered with Chigger Bites, Flustrated, or Working ourselves into a State.

We know the value and consequences of various Fits- Hissy Fits, Conniption Fits, Running Fits and if the situation calls for it- we might even Pitch a Fit. There are vague Nervous Conditions too, which are never labelled with Capital Letters. Nervous conditions are described in more colorful terms:

  • A Basket Case
  • Gone Over a Cliff
  • Being High Strung
  • Falling to Pieces (which made Patsy Cline a major Grand Ol’ Opry Star)
  • Breaking to Bits, Melancholia
  • Flighty, Nervous Ninnies, Having Spots before Our Eyes

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8 thoughts on “Sinking Spells…

      1. Kangaroos lose in the top paddock, I suspect. A couple of sangers (sandwiches) short of a picnic – two polite yet typically Australian euphemisms for varying degrees of insanity. Though I prefer the term “eccentric” sometimes in polite company:)

        Liked by 1 person

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