How long is a cotton picking minute?

by Elsewhere 34 Replies latest jw friends

  • tyydyy

    I'm from the south and have lived in rural areas where older blacks and whites could tell you stories about their cotton picking days. When I was a kid in East Texas there were a lot of people who used the phrase but I never got the impression that it was a derogatory phrase. Now Cotton Picker is a different story. Cotton Picker was usually used to refer to someone the speaker considered worthless whether black or white but when used in connection with a black person it was taken as a racial slur. When used to describe a white person it usually meant the "white trash".

    In my world, which is probably near the origin of the phrase, Cotton Pickin' was just a colorful addition to a southern story-teller's vocabulary.

    How long is a cotton pickin' minute? Just long enough to git a word in edgewise.


  • willyloman

    I think it's just under a New York minute, but I'm not sure.

  • DanTheMan

    You would only use that phrase in the most tongue-in-cheek way up here in the North, can you still say that in the South with a straight face and nobody will laugh?

  • Sparkplug

    Dan! Of course. In fact I get called Niglette on a regular basis. The south has not really progressed that much. At work there are a lot of racist comments like, "she only promotes her kind"... of which I say, "well then I guess I stand half a chance." You hear it from both sides.

  • Elsewhere

    I want to put the breaks on now... I've never associated this phrase with racism and I've always heard it said in a funny context.

    All I wanted to know was how much time was supposed to have passed, similar to the meaning of a New York Minute, meaning a very short period of time.

  • tyydyy

    I was at a party this week where some one used the n word. They weren't talking to me so I'm not sure what the context was. (not that it matters) OMG I thought the hostess was going to rip his eyes out, and she is white. The south is changing but there's still a need for more people to speak up and make it known that some words and phrases just won't be tolerated.


    PS. Sparkplug,

    I loved your piece about being hit on by "happy" girls. LOL

  • Sparkplug

    Sorry Elsewhere...

    Did not mean to prattle. I think lt means a long time and I say it to my kiddos all the time.


  • El Kabong
    El Kabong

    A cotton picking minute is a lot longer than a New York minute. The pace of life in the South is a lot slower than the big cities up north.

  • EvilForce

    I don't like to think of the south as being slower, but rather a more humane pace ;)

    Ex-Yankee - Ex Jo Ho - New Southerner

  • Country_Woman

    thanks, I never heard the expression before, but...

    I clearly remember a song about cotton picking...... seems just one line repeated all over

    Johnny Cash with: PICK A BALE O'COTTON (bought it in 1964)

    thanks to you, I am now humming it (better then a kingdom song)

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