R Is For Rhubarb, Rightly So

Screen Shot 2016-03-21 at 11.01.10 AM“Lady, you know what happens at a sale, when two women get hold of the same dress? THAT’s a Rhubarb!”

~ Rhubarb, a 1951 baseball movie

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I chose rhubarb as my letter “R” because, beyond knowing that it’s a tart vegetable with great health benefits, I knew there was a cute old movie about baseball and a cat named Rhubarb.

I remember seeing the movie somewhere along the line, and from that movie I knew that rhubarb was a slang term in baseball meaning a disagreement or a fight.

What I did not know when I started researching rhubarb is that the word is sometimes defined as nonsense.  As in you might say: “Jane is talking rhubarb.”

I also did not know that “rhubarb” is the word that extras in a play say while onstage to create background noise.

I also did not know that “on a rhubarb” was WWII fighter pilot slang for being on a strafing mission on enemy ground.

Finally, I also did not know that “hitting the rhubarb” is slang for getting so drunk that you can’t drive without going off the road.

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And that, kids, is today’s installment of my A To Z Challenge theme, FOOD: Talking The Talk. 

Published by

Ally Bean

Observant. Creative. Humorous. Adaptable. Happy enough. Looking for the crumb of truth in the cookie of life.

52 thoughts on “R Is For Rhubarb, Rightly So”

  1. Fascinating! The only one I’d heard of was the nonsense definition. A cat? A movie? Good grief, what have I been doing with my life?!

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    1. joey, I didn’t know the nonsense definition, but I remembered the movie as being cute in an old-fashioned silly movie sort of way. And now, of course, I’m fully versed in all uses of the word rhubarb. For those magic moments when such knowledge is useful! o.0

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    1. Tamara Narayan, I’m doing all I can to keep you informed about nonsense. In fact, that might be one of the things I do best. Of course, my only question is: will you be eating rhubarb with a runcible spoon?

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    1. Gulara, yum… a rhubarb dessert sounds delicious to me. As long as there’s a scoop of vanilla ice cream on top, I don’t care what you call it. A grumble. A crumble. A crisp.

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      1. 😀 We actually have rhubarb growing in the garden. Very nice crumble… 🙂 Another great post – though it made me hungry. I love how you bring different sayings and facts together. Great skill.

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        1. Gulara, thank you. I know what you mean about being hungry. I have been since I chose food as my challenge topic. I don’t know how food bloggers do it; it’d weigh a ton if I wrote about food every day!

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  2. I didn’t know any of that! Learn something new, thank you Ms. Bean. It’s very interesting, all the expressive places that rhubarb is used. I don’t actually care to eat it though.

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    1. Sarah, when I discovered all these different ways in which the word rhubarb is used, I was amazed. It always seemed so modest. Enjoy your rhubarb, whatever you choose to do with it.

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  3. I did not know these things either. My grandma used to make rhubarb pies, and I used to eat the rhubarb straight out of the backyard. I’m not sure why, because I never really liked it. I guess it was because I could. Now I find it too tart for my tastes.

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  4. I once decided to make a strawberry rhubarb pie from scratch. My friend took a nap as I started cutting the rhubarb. When he woke up an hour later, I was still cutting the rhubarb. Luckily, he joined in. Rhubarb for me is always about hours of slicing it. 😉

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  5. I didn’t know any of that either. I just know that strawberry rhubarb pie is my absolute favorite and that no one in the grocery stores around here have any idea what it is.

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    1. Allie P, I was amazed by what I found with a simple little search on the word “rhubarb.” I like strawberry rhubarb pie, too. Our grocery bakery makes it in early spring, for a few weeks, then it’s gone.

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    1. In My Cluttered Attic, rhubarb, I discovered, is a versatile word, useful in many ways, but still in need of lots of sugar if you’re going to eat it.

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  6. I’m a huge fan of rhubarb, and I hate when strawberries are added to muck it up. I love making rhubarb crisp, and I’ve even bought rhubarb marmalade from American Spoon Foods. Don’t convert anyone–leave more for us.

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    1. nance, I like the way you think! I agree, let’s keep rhubarb a secret. After writing and talking about it now, I’m adding it to my grocery list. I think a nice crisp is in order.

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