A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

Recent entries:
“I had a shepherd’s pie for lunch. He was furious” (5/22)
“Average gumbo is only medi-okra” (5/21)
“The job requires me to get a potato clock” (up at eight o’clock) (5/21)
“The past is your lesson. The present is your gift. The future is your motivation” (5/21)
Entry forthcoming—B.P. (5/21)
More new entries...

A  B  C  D  E  F  G  H  I  J  K  L  M  N  O  P  Q  R  S  T  U  V  W  X  Y  Z


Entry from November 27, 2006
“Give a Texan an enema, and you can bury him in a matchbox”

Some people think that Texans are full of it. Hence, this saying: “Give a Texan an enema, and you can buy him in a matchbox.”

There’s a lengthy discussion of this saying at the last site below (well worth reading in full). A similar “mountain lion in Texas” joke also allegedly reveals what Texans are made of.


Google Groups: alt.politics.bush
From:  Jimmy
Date:  Wed, Mar 5 2003 7:24 am

Like the old Texan saying “If you removed all the shite from a Texan, you could bury him in a matchbox!

Google Groups: alt.religion.druid
From:  cloghan
Date:  Tues, Dec 2 2003 11:00 am

America needs to stop electing their presidents from the bible belt. Reminds me of an old cowboy joke, “give a Texan an enema and you can bury him in a match box”.

Google Groups: rec.woodworking
From:  George
Date:  Sat, Oct 28 2006 4:56 pm

Sounds like the call to the casket manufacturer from a frantic mortuary regarding a six-six client who wanted to be buried in his four-inch heeled boots and Stetson.

“Texan, obviously?”

“Yes, how did you know?”

“Give him an enema and you can bury him in a matchbox....”

majordomo: A Tribute to Alan Dundes
How Do You Fit a Texan in a Match Box?
An essay exploring the stereotype of Texans being full of shit

Of all the people from all the states in the United States, the people from Texas have the most pronounced and well known stereotype. People from all over the world might not have any idea what or where Ohio, Idaho, Wyoming, Georgia, Arizona, and all the others states (save a few) are, but they will most likely know what a Texan is. If you asked, they might even be able to tell you what a Texan looks like *Leach, Joseph, The Typical Texan: Biography of an American Myth. Southern Methodist University Press, Dallas, TX, ©1952. p4]: “a tall, lanky, tanned cowboy, booted and spurred, a ten gallon hat on his head, and a six-shooter at his hip.” *Leach, Joseph, The Typical Texan: Biography of an American Myth. Southern Methodist University Press, Dallas, TX, ©1952. jacket cover. No doubt there is a distinctive look to a Texan, which is probably a remnant of the “cowboy” image exploited by Hollywood, and the media for ads like Marlboro cigarettes. However, the Texan image tells us nothing of their character. Odd since if Texans are known for one thing, it is their ego.
(...)
This connection to stretching the truth or telling lies to excrement is not uncommon at all. The phrase “that person is full of shit,” or “that person is full of crap” is often used to refer to a liar *Sagarin, Edward, The Anatomy of Dirty Words. Lyle Stuart Publisher ©1962. p54,58,76. So it is only natural that blason populaire about Texans develops dealing with exactly this concept.

Question: Why do Texans have brown eyes?
Answer: Because of the shit up to their eyebrows.
To be said after the proceeding answer is given:
Question: Why do some Texans have blue eyes?
Answer: Half a quart low.2Berkeley Folklore Archives: Blason Populaire: Texans
How do you fit a Texan in a shoe box? Give him an enema.5See Appendix I for more versions of this joke.*Berkeley Folklore Archives: Blason Populaire: Texans
(...)
A six-foot-eight Texan died and they didn’t have a casket big enough to bury him in. So they gave him an enema and buried him in a shoe box.*Berkeley Folklore Archives: Blason Populaire: Texans
What is even more interesting is how this is expanded upon by making Texans so full of shit that they actually become shit.

What’s the difference between a Texan and a bucket of shit?
The handle.*Berkeley Folklore Archives: Blason Populaire: Texans
Not only that but even the state, the very land of Texas becomes polluted.

How do you find Texas?
You walk east till you smell shit, and you walk south till you step in it.8More versions of this can be found in Appendix I.*Berkeley Folklore Archives: Blason Populaire: Texans
If God had intended Texans to ski, he would have made bullshit white.*Berkeley Folklore Archives: Blason Populaire: Texans

This association of land with feces is really not surprising when one considers that is the very land which holds the source of the outsider’s resentment: oil. Folklore has been stated to be the manifestation in some way of what people are really feeling *Dundes, Lecture: Jan 21, 1997. These jokes become an important mechanism for voicing the frustration that Americans must have with people who are more wealthy, and especially the frustration with those people who attained that wealth through very little work. The Texan stereotype just happens to be very conducive to scatological folklore.
(...)
As it was pointed out earlier, any ethic group can be readily substituted for another in almost any ethic slur. This could easily be used to argue a weakness of this analysis, considering that it is likely that many of these jokes have at some point been used in context with another ethnicity or nationality. Yet it does not account for the fact that some of the literature and scholarly work on blason populaire seem to distinguish this folklore from the rest by placing it in its own sub-category especially designed for Texans and scatology8Legman, Rational of the Dirty Joke. Volume 2. ©. p961. There is a clear and undeniable association between Texans and scatological folklore, and the connection is well rooted in association, history, and psychology. Then again, I am a Texan, and this whole paper could be a bunch of shit.

Whatever.

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

APPENDIX I: Texan Blason Populaire
“How do you fit a Texan in a match box” versions and cognates
Some man was getting tired of hearing the bragging stories of a Texan. He finally jumped up and said, “Yea, those Texans are big people. I knew one who was so big that when he died they couldn’t find a coffin to fit him. So they gave him an enema and buried him in a shoe box.”*Berkeley Folklore Archives: Blason Populaire: Texans

First mortician - Do you know why morticians in Texas are so poor?
Second mortician - I hadn’t really thought about it - tell me why?
First mortician - Because when you kick the shit out of all those Texans, you can bury them in a matchbox.*Berkeley Folklore Archives: Blason Populaire: Texans

Do you know how to bury a Texan?
Give him an enema and bury him in a matchbox.*Berkeley Folklore Archives: Blason Populaire: Texans

“Bucket” versions
What’s the difference between a Texan and a bucket of shit?
The bucket.*Legman, Rational of the Dirty Joke. Volume 2. ©. p963

“How do you find Texas?” versions
How do you find Texas?
Go east till you smell it, and south till you step on it.*Berkeley Folklore Archives: Blason Populaire: Texans

How do you get from California to Texas?
Go east till you smell shit, that’s Oklahoma. Then turn south until you step in it, that’s Texas.*Berkeley Folklore Archives: Blason Populaire: Texans

“Don’t Flush!” versions and cognates
A guy walks into a bar in Texas and asks for a short beer. The bartender brings him a gigantic beer. The guy says, “I asked for a short beer.” “That is,” says the bartender, “everything’s big in Texas.” So the guy asks for a bowl of potato chips, and the bartender brings him an enormous bowl of potato chips. The guy exclaims, “This bowl is gigantic!” “I told you,” says the bartender, “everything’s big in Texas.” So the guy has to take a leak and asks the bartender where the bathroom is. The bartender says, “You go down the hall and turn to the right.” The guy, really drunk, goes down the hall and turns to the left and falls in a swimming pool. Since he a while coming back, the bartender goes to check on him, and finding him in the bathroom, he looks out at the pool. The guy floundering in the swimming pool, yelling, “Don’t flush it! Don’t flush it!”*Berkeley Folklore Archives: Blason Populaire: Texans

Lion versions and cognates
One lion walking behind another lion begins to lick his ass. “Have you turned into a fairy?” The lion in front asks. Leo answered, “no I just ate a Texan and I’m trying to get the bad taste out of my mouth.*Legman, Rational of the Dirty Joke. Volume 2. ©. p961

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

ENDNOTES
Berrey, Lester and van den Bark, Melvin, American Thesaurus of Slang, 2nd Edition. Thomas Y. Crowell Company, New York, NY, ©1952.

Dundes, Alan, “Lecture on the explanations of the Kwakiutl Potlach.” February, 18, 1997, © 1997.

Dundes, Alan, “Opening lecture and a brief introduction to folklore.” January, 21, 1997, © 1997.

Dundes, Alan, Life is Like a Chicken Coop Ladder: A Study of German National Character Through Folklore. Wayne State University Press, Detroit, MI, ©1984.

Leach, Joseph, The Typical Texan: Biography of an American Myth. Southern Methodist University Press, Dallas, TX, ©1952.

Legman, Rational of the Dirty Joke. Volume 2. ©.

Sagarin, Edward, The Anatomy of Dirty Words. Lyle Stuart Publisher ©1962.

Posted by Byrne on April 2, 2005 11:01 AM

Posted by Barry Popik
Texas (Lone Star State Dictionary) • (1) Comments • Monday, November 27, 2006 • Permalink


A Newfie was walking on the beach one day and saw a sunbathing Texan with no tan where his hat would sit. He said, “I always knew Texans were full of shit but this one is a quart low.”

Posted by beamer  on  10/10  at  12:34 AM

Page 1 of 1 pages