Friday, June 15, 2012

Firewater Friday - Sing a song of sixpence while all in a tizzy

Have you ever gotten yourself so worked up that you were in a veritable tizzy? Hmm . . . I'm not even sure I know what in the heck a tizzy is?  But writing it out twice in two sentences is making me dizzy.

A tizzy is outdated English jargon for a sixpence coin; the equivalent of about $2.75 nowadays.  Mmmm . . . not much there to get roused about.  I'm not sure I can even get a small . . . er short . .  coffee at Starbucks for that.

I feel like I'm going round and round and really not getting much of anywhere.  Perhaps this word . . . this tizziness . . . doesn't have any literal roots in language, per se.  It happens . . . people make up their own words all the time.  It has been said that 'tizzy' is simply a corruption of 'dizzy'.  But, nope, it ain't so.

The most likely source of the word is based on a 1930's radio variety show character named "Tizzy Lish".  She was a hyper, scatterbrained character on the The Happy Go Lucky Hour.  The character, played by Bill Comstock, was a cooking "expert". 

Miss Tizzy would start her skit, "Well hello, folksies!" She would begin with a few one-liners, mostly self deprecating jokes.  And then she would go on to give a recipe and encourage her listeners to write them down.  For example:

Frog Stew

First put a pan on the stove.  Now take it off.  Are you  taking your pans off? Shame on you!

Now, take two chicken legs.  Now put one leg in the sink.  Now put the other leg in the oven. My, what long legs you have!

Now, take a chuck roast and cut a hole in it.  Now, look in and see if Chuck is in there.  Yes he is!   Hello Chuck!!

When guests arrive serve and when they ask, "why do you call this  frog stew".  You say. "After one mouthful you'll hop around a while and then croak!" 

Then she would end her monologue "Well, goodbye, folksies!" 

So, now you know.

Coffee, Cream and Cake Cocktail

1 1/2 Ounce Baileys Irish Cream
1 1/2 Ounce Pinnacle Cake Vodka
8 Ounces Strong Coffee, Chilled
1 Tablespoon Powdered Sugar
2 Tablespoons Half and Half

Make coffee in advance and chill in refrigerator until ready to use.  I used espresso.

Mix all the ingredients and pour into a blender with a cup or so of crushed ice.  

Blend until frothy.


  1. Sing a song of sixpence a pocket full of rye,
    four and twenty blackbirds baked in a pie,
    when the pie was opened the birds began to sing,
    and wasn't that a dainty dish to set before the king?

  2. Ahah!
    Thanks makes more sense than the coin thing I found...