Monday, May 05, 2008

JUST TAKING A QUICK CULTURAL TEMPERATURE CHECK

HOW MANY OF YOU KNOW what "tharn" means?

That is all.

40 comments:

awryone said...

From Watership Down tharn? Deer-in-the-headlights?

Or, the until recently unknown to me Tharn ?

chrismear said...

I do not know.

Aaron Headly said...

I remember it from reading W.D. some thirty years ago.

Also the rabbit's counting system: one, two, three, many. It's the one I use to this day.

Shivers said...

Tharn is a fictional planet in the 30th century DC Universe.

After the destruction of Zerox, most of the survivors (mostly sorcerers) resettled on Tharn.

:)

Shivers

certifiedprepwn3d said...

It's from Watership Down, and that usage is referred to by Stephen King in the Stand - when Stu first encounters the Walkin' Dude.

I am not familiar with the DC universe usage.

Brandon said...

I guess you want a representative sample.

I had forgotten at first, but remembered when I saw the Watership Down reference. Damn Hrududus and all that.

I'm 23 and male if that helps, although I'm probably the only person in my circle that would recognize the term.

ari said...

Hooray Watership Down!

C. Alan Joyce said...

[raises battered copy of Watership Down]

Jer said...

Richard Adams.

paulf said...

Not a clue.

Glenn Peters said...

The DC Tharn, the Marvel Tharn, or the lapine adjective?

Glenn Peters said...

OK, I admit I had to look those up, but I am a huge Watership Down fan, and do occasionally swear in lapine.

Paul said...

had to look it up. never read W.D.

//English major

Ketzirah Carly said...

I have two rabbits and am a huge W.D. fan. I've seen "tharn" live and in person!

YL said...

silly people.

it's a contraction of "that" and "darn" used by dusty cowboys on the dusty cow trail. as in "tharn steer's gone funny, slim; best strap 'em on toppa t'others."

cowboys use only so many syllables as is strictly necessary, communicating mostly via harmonica.

Tom Burchfield said...

Right, YL, as in "them tharn hills"

Otherwise, my cultural temp is so low on this one, I am a corpse . . though I did read "The Girl in a Swing." Good ghost story!

David said...

That is when a rabbit gets post-traumatic stress disorder, right?

AdamR said...

A "tharn" is what jabs a someone from New Hampshire while that person is pruning roses.

"Tharn" is the past conditional participle of the verb "to throw."

"Tharn" is what you warp a thoom with, to make thloth.

I'm pretty sure Tharn Wooli was Hober Malow's second-in-command in Asimov's Foundation novels.

Waldo Pepper said...

Weren't tharns the large birdish mounts in John Norman's S&M fantasy "Gor" books?

Annje said...

Tharn: To be frigtened stiff..Deer in headlights. :)

Example: What I would do if I ever met one John Hodgman. I'd become tharn.

Julia said...

Tharn there whippersnappers?

Ok, I have no idea.

Jim Fitzgerald said...

That + there + one

As in:

"Which rabbit would you like me to skin for you?"

"Tharn with the floppy ears"

MShades said...

I still use that word from time to time to describe my students. No one else gets it, but I do. And it makes me happy.

JackalFive said...

I would've assumed it some type of pirate and/or cowboy slang. Or a sea chanty.

I failed.

Andrew said...

The host of The Sound of Young America, Jesse Tharn?

Adam N. said...

Sorry, no.

Pervez said...

I'm insulted that you would even ask me that.

Jim said...

I certainly didn't know the DC Comics reference.

I was thinking it sounded vaguely Hillbilly, but I don't know where it would be used, so I'm doubting such a context exists.

McShowoff said...

I had no idea. But now I know, and I will do my best to avoid going tharn for the rest of my life. It sounds miserable.

karan said...

Nope. Just to join the nope-crowd. (If I ask what is 'Watership Down', I think you'll get the idea)

Dan said...

Until now, I did not know that word. It's been over a decade since I last read Watership Down and I have never gotten into comic books.

erratica said...

I assume you are speaking of the archaic Frankish term, which refers to a small, spiny-backed rodent that lives in wooded areas in Western Europe. The greater Tharn, or Tharnus Rex, can be found in the vast arboreal forests of North America, though it is doubtful the two species are closely related.

An interesting fact about the Tharn - its sharp spines were often used to decorate the wedding headdresses of Celtic brides, which led to the phrase - "Touch not the Tharn, but a glove".

In educare, erratica.

Fader said...

I do, now, because of your blog. And yes, this means YOU KILLED YOUR OWN CAT.

Mr. Austin said...

I'd blocked out Watership as it's been more than a couple decades since I read/saw it.

My guess was a yarn/thread hybrid. Something with the comfort and fashion of yarn but with the tensile strength and portability of thread.

I need to get out more.

Lubab No More said...

-1 people know what "tharn" means.

Master said...

Also, in certain regions of the Deep South, "tharn"--with a soft th--is a word used to indicate plural possession of a singular noun.

For instance--
Q: Whose youngun (child) is that?
A: (pointing to parents) Tharn.

Tharn--with a hard th--is, of course, something that one might literally or figuratively have in one's side.

TSyndrome said...

Great meeting you tonight, Hodg-man! Hope to see you around!

kristina b said...

I just wanted to be 38.

Gayle And Don said...

i didn't know there was going to be a quiz.... damn.

Alexandra Richmond said...

Does anyone remember Issac Mizrahi's riff on "yaren't" and "gerna" in his doc, Unzipped? He talked about Bette Davis' accent in the movie Whatever Happened to Baby Jane. She'd address her sister (played by Joan Crawford) and say, "YARN'T EVER GETTIN OUTTA THAT CHAIR, BLANCHE. AND YARN'T EVER GONNA LEAVE IT." Then the "gerna"was something his sewing teacher would say. Then he'd say, "YARN'T EVER GERRRNA..." you get the idea.