Tag Archives: language

Cold As Hell

Welcome Winter

If you live in other parts of the country or the world, you may not understand the mind of a Southerner. On the other hand, there’s probably no “may” to it.

Sweet tea in Mason jars. It’s a Southern thing.

You don’t understand why we like sweet tea, grits, cornbread, fried okra (if it’s done correctly), banjos, guns, God, and an occasional jab at the North (those *@!% Yankees). But that’s OK, we love you, anyway, as our typical hospitality demonstrates.

But when it comes to winter… You guys up north REALLY don’t get us. Seriously. Anytime we get excited about snow, you talk about how much you can’t stand it. You even make fun of how we shut down our lives when no more than a quarter of an inch falls on the streets.

You really, really don’t understand.

So, when yesterday morning was the coldest day of the year so far, and when this morning’s temps were all the way down in the high 20’s here in Chattanooga, you folk not from here don’t understand how a guy like me could be giddy over being able to break out a fleece-lined flannel shirt in order to go outside and see my breath as I walked over crunchy, frost-covered fallen leaves.

You see, it’s like this: When you’re accustomed to frying in high heat and swimming in humidity, actually experiencing cold weather in winter is refreshing. And, yes, we are dreaming (and hoping, praying, etc.) for a white Christmas.

Any Cold Is Bad

However, there are some Southerners who hate any kind of cold. Many of them are the poor and elderly who don’t have the ability to fight off the low temperatures. They suffer during this time.

But then there are others who moved to the South to escape the cold winters of the north; they feel betrayed when it gets cold down here.

Finally, there are those who can’t be happy no matter what. They want to complain about anything and everything, hot or cold. As a matter of fact, more often than not it’s that type of people you will hear repeat a familiar descriptor about the weather:

“It’s cold as hell outside!” 

Describing Hell

“Hell” is a word that is used in describing a whole host of things (or, a whole heck of a lot of things… see what I did there?). Things are big as, hot as, loud as, messed up as, weird as, and sorry as hell. But on what do they base their adjectives? How much do they really know about Hell in order to draw a similarity that makes any sense?

I mean, if I was to say, “That ant is as tiny as Mt. Everest,” would that even compute? No, because Mt. Everest isn’t tiny.

Then why say something is as cold as hell? I mean, we know from the Bible that Hell is hot, but how hot exactly is up for debate; therefor describing something as “hot as hell” is within the realm of possibility, at least.

But “cold as“? Really?

On the other hand, Hell is described as a place where the residents will, despite the wailing masses crying out for a single drop of water, be completely and utterly alone. They will reside in a place without love, without compassion, without the gentle touch of a caring hand, without a single, solitary voice ever saying, not even once in a billion years, “It will be OK.”

Does that make you shiver thinking about it? It does me.

Maybe Hell is “cold” after all. 


Filed under America, General Observations, places, Weather

For Thy Stomach’s Sake

An add I’m about to place:

“Desperate Baptist school bus driver is actively seeking a Greek scholar who can verify στόμαχος (stomachos) also refers to one’s nerves.”

It’s been that kind of day. 

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Filed under Alcohol, baptist, Bible Study, Do not judge, Humor, legalism, Struggles and Trials, Theology, translations

Wel Come

The Sign

I was being a good son this evening. My mother needed help replacing an air conditioning window unit in her bedroom, so I had been up at her house on the mountain. On the way back I stopped by a gas station to keep from having to walk home.

Wel ComeAs soon as I parked next to a fuel pump, a scrolling sign caught my attention. My little girl, Haley, even though she is dyslexic, said, “Daddy, what is wrong with that sign?”

Honestly, I don’t think anything was wrong with the sign; all the lights worked perfectly. There must have been something the owner of the store was trying to say.


What could it mean? What is Mr. Patel trying to say? This might be a good time to break out my old hermeneutics text book. Or, on the other hand, I could forget the obvious possibilities and think of some more unusual possibilities.

What is meant by “Wel Come“? Here are some ideas.

  • The “L” is missing. In reality, the store owner wanted some privacy to enjoy his collection of beer and nachos, but patrons insisted on wanting to buy things. Therefore, out of frustration, he gave in to their demands to enter and put up a sign meant to say, “Well, just come in, if you insist.”
  • Mr. Patel is praying for a well so that he can keep from buying fuel from the Saudis.
  • It could be an attempt to tell passersby to comb their hair.
  • Maybe it is a Hindu prayer for health?

All I know is that despite the spelling differences, and despite the context, the sign in the window could not mean what we think it means – that’s too obvious. Surely it does not simply mean, welcome.

Too Obvious

This reminds me of verses of scripture that are so obvious, yet people refuse to accept them at face value. They claim textual variances, human writers, and all sorts of things as reasons the Bible could not mean what it says. For example, many people, even so-called Christians, have read “…I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:6) and come to the conclusion that it has to mean something, but NOT that Jesus is the “only way.”

Many atheists look at the obvious “design” of the universe and come to the conclusion that even though it looks like a finely-tuned machine, there can’t be a Designer. They come up with every possible solution to the question of origins, no matter how remote, in order to discount the obvious. They say, “Show me the evidence,” then attempt to discredit any given to them.


The most logical meaning of the sign in the window, based on every other sign in windows I have seen in my lifetime, is that the store owner was saying, “Welcome!” He may have misaspelicated, but the meaning was obvious.

Jesus says, “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls” (Matthew 11:28-29 ESV). What’s so hard to understand?

You are WELCOME.


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Filed under Faith, General Observations, translations, World View