Ms. Dominique tweets:
I was at book launching party last year for a friend who had just gotten her poetry book published. She is the “Southern belle” type and flirts constantly and perhaps unconsciously with everyone—male or female. While I was talking to her, she suddenly saw a guy across the room and said, “I have to say hello to my friend who’s standing over there in that wad of men.”
I was surprised by this odd expression, mostly because, while I have lived in Arkansas and Tennessee, I had never heard this particular Southernism before. But when I asked my Southern friends, they had all heard this expression (okay, I lived in Northern Arkansas).
In the Old South, a group of men is called a “wad.”
One of my male friends explained it to me this way:
Fish travel in a “school”
Geese move in a “gaggle”
Sheep come in a “flock” or sometimes even in a “mob”
Cows come in a “herd”
And, of course, men come in a….
[you get the rest]