Posted by ESC on September 10, 2003
In Reply to: The meaning of a phrase posted by Henry on September 10, 2003
: : Hi, I am actually looking for two things:
: : 1. what does "whistlin' Dixie" mean? and
: : 2. Please fill in if you could: "It is not the ???, it's the thrill of the chase"
: : Thanks,
: : Lorette
: From http://184.108.40.206/search?q=cache:k4vSVXI91EJ:www.linguistlist.org/issues/13/13-564.html+Meaning+%22whistling+dixie%22&hl=en&ie=UTF-8
: From this origin, the general idiomatic meaning, confirmed by the Random House dictionary, is derived: "to engage in unrealistic fantasies; waste one's time", probably based on the idea of Southerners marching and whistling dixie in the hope to win their battle to keep the South
: independent when the cause was lost already, hence also the more general figurative meaning "to make meaningless claims, preach hollow wisdom, to be hopelessly optimistic or sadly self-deluded."
: It's not the kill, it's the thrill of the chase. Said in defence of hunting.
YOU AIN'T JUST WHISTLIN' DIXIE - "You're not just talking or making small talk, you're saying something important, worthwhile. 'Dixie' refers to the popular song." From "Whistlin' Dixie: A Dictionary of Southern Expressions" by Robert Hendrickson (Pocket Books, New York, 1993).