Where did The Term Pi$$ Poor Come From

Discussion in 'The Pump House Saloon' started by dons2346, Jul 9, 2010.

  1. dons2346

    dons2346 Well-Known Member

    Aug 21, 2009
    Move between WA and points south
    Where did Pi$$ Poor come from?

    Interesting History

    They used to use urine to tan animal skins, so families
    used to all pee in a pot & then once a day it was taken &
    Sold to the tannery.......if you had to do this to survive
    you were "Pi$$ Poor"

    But worse than that were the really poor folk who couldn't
    even afford to buy a pot......they "didn't have a pot to
    pi$$ in" & were the lowest of the low.

    The next time you are washing your hands and complain
    because the water temperature isn't just how you like it,
    think about how things used to be. Here are some facts about
    the 1500s:

    Most people got married in June because they took their
    yearly bath in May, and they still smelled pretty good by
    June.. However, since they were starting to smell . ..... .
    Brides carried a bouquet of flowers to hide the body odor.
    Hence the custom today of carrying a bouquet when getting

    Baths consisted of a big tub filled with hot water. The man
    of the house had the privilege of the nice clean water, then
    all the other sons and men, then the women and finally the
    children. Last of all the babies. By then the water was so
    dirty you could actually lose someone in it.. Hence the
    saying, "Don't throw the baby out with the Bath water!"

    Houses had thatched roofs-thick straw-piled high, with no
    wood underneath. It was the only place for animals to get
    warm, so all the cats and other small animals (mice, bugs)
    lived in the roof. When it rained it became slippery and
    sometimes the animals would slip and fall off the roof...
    Hence the saying "It's raining cats and dogs."

    There was nothing to stop things from falling into the
    house. This posed a real problem in the bedroom where bugs
    and other droppings could mess up your nice clean bed. Hence,a bed with big posts
    and a sheet hung over the top afforded some protection. That's how canopy beds came into existence.

    The floor was dirt. Only the wealthy had something other
    than dirt. Hence the saying, "Dirt poor." The wealthy had
    slate floors that would get slippery in the winter when wet,
    so they spread thresh (straw) on floor to help keep their
    footing. As the winter wore on, they added more thresh until,when you opened
    the door, it would all start slipping outside. A piece of wood was placed in the entrance-way.
    Hence: a thresh hold.

    (Getting quite an education, aren't you?)

    In those old days, they cooked in the kitchen with a big
    kettle that always hung over the fire.. Every day they lit
    the fire and added things to the pot. They ate mostly
    vegetables and did not get much meat. They would eat the
    stew for dinner, leaving leftovers in the pot to get cold
    overnight and then start over the next day. Sometimes stew
    had food in it that had been there for quite a while. Hence
    the rhyme: Peas porridge hot, peas porridge cold, peas
    porridge in the pot nine days old. Sometimes they could
    obtain pork, which made them feel quite special. When
    visitors came over, they would hang up their bacon to show
    off. It was a sign of wealth that a man could, "bring home
    the bacon." They would cut off a little to share with guests
    and would all sit around and chew the fat.

    Those with money had plates made of pewter. Food with high
    acid content caused some of the lead to leach onto the food,
    causing lead poisoning death. This happened most often with
    tomatoes, so for the next 400 years or so, tomatoes were
    considered poisonous.

    Bread was divided according to status. Workers got the burnt
    bottom of the loaf, the family got the middle, and guests
    got the top, or the upper crust.

    Lead cups were used to drink ale or whiskey. The combination
    would Sometimes knock the imbibers out for a couple of days.
    Someone walking along the road would take them for dead and
    prepare them for burial. They were laid out on the kitchen
    table for a couple of days and the family would gather around and eat
    and drink and wait and see if they would wake up.
    Hence the custom of holding a wake.

    England is old and small and the local folks started running
    out of places to bury people. So they would dig up coffins
    and would take the bones to a bone-house, and reuse the
    grave. When reopening these coffins, 1 out of 25 coffins
    were found to have scratch marks on the inside and they
    realized they had been burying people alive... So they would
    tie a string on the wrist of the corpse, lead it through the
    coffin and up through the ground and tie it to a bell.
    Someone would have to sit out in the graveyard all night
    (the graveyard shift.) to listen for the bell; thus, someone
    could be, saved by the bell or was considered a dead ringer.

    And that's the truth....Now, whoever said History was boring!!!
    Last edited: Jul 9, 2010
    CampingJosh and Insulation Tim like this.
  2. jack404

    jack404 Former Guest

    Jan 11, 2010
    excellent post !!!
  3. carver

    carver Moderator

    Jul 28, 2008
    DAV, Deep in the Pineywoods of East Texas, just we
    And yet there is so much more out there! Chewing the rag, how did that saying get started?
  4. bmpeele

    bmpeele New Member

    Feb 27, 2010
    The grand old state of North Carolina
    Concerning that last one about being svaed by the bell, they would actualy kill you for being a witch and coming back from the dead.
  5. snapshot762

    snapshot762 Active Member

    Oct 18, 2013
    South Dakota
    Old thread I know, but BTTT because I found it interesting!

  6. Insulation Tim

    Insulation Tim Well-Known Member

    Oct 29, 2008
    I try to learn something new everyday. Thanks to this post I can now relax for at least a week.
  7. Alpo

    Alpo Well-Known Member

    Feb 3, 2007
    NW Florida
    There's a reason why this is in the joke section, you know. Most (I don't know about all of it, but most) of that is nonsense.
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