Heard in Missouri: "but good!"

David Donnell David.Donnell at EARTHLINK.NET
Wed Dec 19 23:03:04 UTC 2007

The obvious question: when you say you never thought of it as
regional, have you heard it 'up' in Michigan?


At 12:30 PM -0500 12/19/07, Dennis Preston wrote:
>I am a native speaker of it, as were my parents and pert night
>everbody around me (Louisville area, early 1940s on). Never thought
>of it as regional.
>>---------------------- Information from the mail header
>>Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>>Poster:       David Donnell <David.Donnell at EARTHLINK.NET>
>>Subject:      Heard in Missouri: "but good!"
>>Question about an expression I just heard: "but good!"
>>I just returned from St Louis where I was visiting my 88 yr old
>>mother. (Born & raised in southeast Missouri, near Cape Girardeau.)
>>Addressing me and her friend/contemporary, my mom related a
>>conversation about someone's 16 yr old daughter: the girl had stayed
>>out until 3 a.m., sans permission, with her cell phone turned off...
>>Very worrisome to the parents, natch.
>>My mom's friend then asked if the girl would be punished. My mom
>>responded, "I asked [the father] if she was grounded...he said BUT
>>The expression never registered with me before, although it sounded
>>familiar rolling off her tongue; it apparently means something like
>>"and how!"
>>Is anyone familiar with this critter?
>>(Hard to Google such a ubiquitous 2-word combo.)
>>Missouri-native in NYC
>>The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
>Dennis R. Preston
>University Distinguished Professor
>Department of English
>Morrill Hall 15-C
>Michigan State University
>East Lansing, MI 48864 USA
>The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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