Diddly-squat from Sarah

Diddly-squat. I love that word/those words. It seems to be the perfect thing to blog about ― because yep. Sorry. Forgot it was my turn today. So having sat down to think about what I can possibly talk to you about ― other than school holidays and voodoo ― diddly-squat came to mind. It’s a bank holiday so am hopeful no-one will venture over this way, and I might just get away with it.

I think it’s the ‘diddly’ bit of it I like so much. It’s that double ‘d’ in the middle next to the ‘l’ ― diddly ― it makes your tongue do strange things and the sound is so…umm…diddly? If you have ventured over here, why? It’s a holiday. It’s the squat bit that seems to get the meaning of the word/s across. Nothing. Or in some cases, a small, worthless amount. I do think diddly-squat sounds so much better.

Despite googling, I’m still not sure from where the words (word/phrase?) originate, other than the US. According to The Random House Historical Dictionary of American Slang ― diddly-squat is a derivation of doodly-squat from 1934. Clicking through to the link for doodly-squat it brings up diddly-squat ― or perhaps I should say ‘nothing’ there ― other than doodly-squat possibly being a derivation of diddly-squat.

I rather like that doodly bit though. It gets me thinking of absent-minded doodles – the doodles themselves being physically worthless and achieving nothing upon the page. I can’t help but wonder if it can apply to words too? Yet, I suppose whilst absent-mindedly drawing upon the page, your mind may have reached a phenomenal breakthrough….Yet there are occasions when doodling words upon the page might just get you where you want to be. Or is that just me?

I’ve looked up doodle and doodly too. It was that or cleaning the house for the first visitors in yonks (another word with problematic derivation ― yonks, not cleaning). I could spice things up no end by telling you some of the meanings of doodle ― but it was the archaic, a foolish or silly person that hit the mark. I’ve also looked up Yankee Doodle Dandy and as a result ‘macaroni’ ― and that is interesting. Perhaps I’ll blog about that next time?

But for now, I’m going away. Not to clean but to read the wiki-answers bit about Diddly Squat once being born in a noisy inn on the outskirts of Philadelphia at 3pm one Thursday afternoon in 1732. And whilst I do, I’ll have a think about what I might come up with as a spoof source for ‘yonks.’ Donkeys will no doubt be involved…Anything, anything to avoid toilet cleaning.

You would have been so much better off had I simply opted for nothing rather than diddly-squat. Sorry. And here’s a picture of a donkey (image courtesy of free-clipart.net).

A picture of a donkey

A picture of a donkey

16 thoughts on “Diddly-squat from Sarah

  1. My house only gets cleaned when there are visitors expected. I invite people round just so that the sofas won’t disappear under the doghair and the dishes will be washed. I am of the opinion that this is the only right way to carry on, particularly if there are books to write!

  2. Diddly-squat is exactly what I intend to do after our long run of visitors – delighted as we are to have seen them all. The rain, just for a change, is lashing against the windows yet again so I’m going to throw myself on the sofa and indulge in a readathon; next up Jane’s ‘Vampire State of Mind’ then Liz’s ‘The Road Back’. Bliss!

  3. LOL – sounds like a pretty perfect form of diddly-squat Chris – enjoy!!Sx

  4. Does anyone else think that ‘diddly-squat’ sounds like one of those gym moves that makes a little bit of wee come out when you try to perform it?

  5. LOL Jane – and to think I’ve used the word in my latest WIP:) Hadn’t I told you to go away? Now you’ve got me thinking of leaking lunges and- nope. Can’t write the splits one on here. X

  6. I think that you have created a very funny post out of squiddly dot. I can’t wait to meet you to compare diddly’s 🙂 If that makes any kind of sense to you at all then I fear for your sanity. x

  7. Thanks Mandy – you do say the loveliest things – I think, LOL. Can’t wait to compare diddlies/diddly’s either – as long as they aren’t in Jane’s sense of the word LOL. Sx

  8. Aw, this brought back memories…..if someone was being horrible to me at school my Dad used to say, ‘Never mind, love, their opinion’s worth diddly squat anyway’…..always put the smile back on my face again.
    P.S. Loooooooooooove the donkey.

  9. I’m loving your dad Linda. And you’ve got me thinking – I don’t actually use it with the kids and I don’t know why. I so am now. Glad you appreciate the donkey. Desperate times. You have no idea how lucky you are that I didn’t share with you my favourite ever joke which happens to be about a donkey. Thanks so much for your comment. Sx

  10. Perfect post for a Bank Holiday, Sarah – donkeys used to be the big excitement on the beach where I grew up (not literally on the beach). See – I left you in peace until today, because I was somewhere else yesterday, doing diddly squat.

  11. Thanks Juliet. I realised after I’d posted i should have put up a picture of my youngest on a donkey. And that was literally on a beach a couple of weeks ago. Hope you enjoyed your bank holiday. X

  12. Ok, now I want to hear your donkey joke – you can’t tell us about it and then not tell it, if you know what I mean! Great post though, and I’m with Jane re: cleaning, only do it when we have guests. Good thing we have lots of guests …

  13. There’s also “doodley-poo” and “diddley-poo” which mean, well, sh*t, and “doodley-shit” which means “something bad”. And to “diddle” which means to “cheat”. And don’t get me started on donkeys and their various body parts… Hx

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