Do you ever think back to expressions popular in your childhood? In my case, that's the 1950s. If you write about an era, it's good to recall the jargon people used then. My childhood was surrounded by blatant racism. Back then blacks were widely called negroes, and anyone who thought they had any rights was likely to be labeled a nigger lover. An important secret, especially an unsavory one, was the nigger in the woodpile, but if you did someone a kindness, that was mighty white of you. If you asked too many questions, you might be asked in return if you were writing a book. Of course, we all knew there was a sucker born every minute, so you shouldn't take any wooden nickels. If you were lazy, you'd better get on the stick, and if you said something stupid, your friends would want to know if your mother had any kids that lived. And you didn't want to call that palooka a homo, because he'd have a cow. Then you'd be cruisin' for a bruisin' and hurtin' for certain. You'd wind up with a knuckle sandwich, maybe even be pushin' up daisies.
How about you? What were your decade and the expressions you wouldn't touch today with a ten-foot pole?