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Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.

DigiTrad:
THE BALLAD OF LADY MONDEGREEN


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dick greenhaus 19 Apr 13 - 03:14 PM
MGM·Lion 19 Apr 13 - 02:56 PM
GUEST,Mark 19 Apr 13 - 01:03 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 06 Apr 13 - 03:30 PM
GUEST,Reid 06 Apr 13 - 02:07 PM
Lighter 01 Apr 13 - 10:17 AM
Tattie Bogle 01 Apr 13 - 10:11 AM
Airymouse 01 Apr 13 - 08:46 AM
Mo the caller 01 Apr 13 - 05:00 AM
Ebbie 31 Mar 13 - 03:10 PM
PHJim 31 Mar 13 - 03:03 PM
Stringsinger 31 Mar 13 - 11:15 AM
Airymouse 31 Mar 13 - 11:08 AM
GUEST,Frank Burns 18 Jan 10 - 02:33 PM
s&r 09 Nov 09 - 07:31 AM
GUEST,Guest 09 Nov 09 - 07:16 AM
MGM·Lion 09 Nov 09 - 04:32 AM
MGM·Lion 08 Nov 09 - 08:06 AM
Rumncoke 08 Nov 09 - 07:29 AM
MGM·Lion 08 Nov 09 - 02:45 AM
MGM·Lion 06 Nov 09 - 05:48 AM
michaelr 05 Nov 09 - 06:27 PM
Rog Peek 05 Nov 09 - 03:25 PM
GUEST,Pez 05 Nov 09 - 11:44 AM
GUEST,sheryl the k 22 Jun 09 - 10:39 PM
Ref 22 Jun 09 - 08:28 PM
Rumncoke 22 Jun 09 - 07:33 PM
BK Lick 22 Jun 09 - 06:14 PM
Bill D 22 Jun 09 - 05:33 PM
frogprince 22 Jun 09 - 05:21 PM
Bill D 22 Jun 09 - 04:19 PM
Stringsinger 22 Jun 09 - 04:08 PM
GUEST 22 Jun 09 - 03:39 PM
GUEST 24 Sep 07 - 10:15 AM
John MacKenzie 24 Sep 07 - 10:04 AM
GUEST 24 Sep 07 - 10:00 AM
Celtaddict 23 Sep 07 - 10:49 PM
GUEST,Declan 23 Sep 07 - 08:18 AM
Ebbie 23 Sep 07 - 01:27 AM
GUEST, Mikefule 22 Sep 07 - 04:16 PM
John MacKenzie 22 Sep 07 - 03:39 PM
Amos 22 Sep 07 - 03:20 PM
Ron Davies 22 Sep 07 - 02:25 PM
Uncle_DaveO 22 Sep 07 - 01:03 PM
John MacKenzie 22 Sep 07 - 01:00 PM
Uncle_DaveO 22 Sep 07 - 12:57 PM
John MacKenzie 22 Sep 07 - 07:59 AM
Paul Burke 10 Aug 05 - 05:05 AM
GUEST, Hamish 10 Aug 05 - 04:50 AM
Flash Company 09 Aug 05 - 07:00 AM
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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 19 Apr 13 - 03:14 PM

Don't forger "Normalcy"--a word coined by one of our semi-literate Presidents (Garfield)


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 19 Apr 13 - 02:56 PM

"Couldn't care less" is an old[ish] (1940s according to Partridge) idiomatic catchphrase to express emphatic uninterest. "Could care less" derives from it as a counterblasting emphatic expression of interest, but is dependent for any effect on existence, and interlocutor's knowledge, of the earlier phrase.

~M~


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: GUEST,Mark
Date: 19 Apr 13 - 01:03 PM

My mother (who was a librarian by profession) always pronounced it LYE-bree (not even LYE-berry).

I don't sound the "h" in "vehicle".

I tend to pronounce it as "Feb-oo-ary".

And "PEE-can".


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 06 Apr 13 - 03:30 PM

Couldn't care less has appeared in fiction printed in UK (a mystery by a Scot). I read that recently and smiled.

Vehicle: Ve-e-kel and ve-hi-kel (schwa, the backward e) both accepted in Webster's Collegiate.

Have heard ve-hick-el but not common. Especially when speaking disparagingly about a vehicle.


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: GUEST,Reid
Date: 06 Apr 13 - 02:07 PM

A damp Muslim has etymological virtue, does it not? That muslin fabric was named for the North African Muslims/Mussulmans who wove a fairly coarse, sturdy, undyed and inexpensive cotton fabric and marketed it around the Mediterranean littoral where it was found to answer for many tasks.


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Lighter
Date: 01 Apr 13 - 10:17 AM

> Most Americans say, "ve-hick-les".

Not up North we don't.


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Tattie Bogle
Date: 01 Apr 13 - 10:11 AM

Very common in Scotland - " oh definAtely" - with the result that they spell it wrongly (not "wrong") as well.
As for CONTRoversy versus conTROVersy, that's controversial!


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Airymouse
Date: 01 Apr 13 - 08:46 AM

In response to MO, let me quote from "The Words of Mathematics" Surprisingly the source of our word "times"(Indo-European "da") meant to divide. When we say "five times three", we are saying that 15 can be divided into five groups of three. As a verb we properly say "to multiply" although some children say "to times" for obvious reasons. From the same root as "times" comes "tide", which used to mean what "time" now means, as can be seen in the term "eventide" (evening time)


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Mo the caller
Date: 01 Apr 13 - 05:00 AM

At a guide camp one of the girls was corrected for using a damp MUSLIM to keep milk cool.

In the UK there is a TV show called Countdown. A contest involving anamgrams and arithmetic. Between two of the rounds an expert from the OED talks about the origins of words. The first presenters of this long running programme used to tease viewers by saying "should of", knowing that people would write in and complain that they should of said "should have". The present numbers expert drives OH mad by "you times them". To people of our generation, although 4 times 5 is 20 you have to multiply them. But this expression is common with my daughter's generation. I suppose 4 times 5 is itself a contraction of 'add 5 four times'

So when does it stop being 'wrong' and start being part of the evolution of language?


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Ebbie
Date: 31 Mar 13 - 03:10 PM

"the pale and the leader and eyes look so blue." from W A Y back

Actually, the Carters sang it as "...and eyes look like blue." Maud Irving wrote an excellent song, coherent and eloquent. A.P. Carter trashed it, probably unwittingly.

Also from way back: I love "going to hell in a handbag." lol


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: PHJim
Date: 31 Mar 13 - 03:03 PM

I can't believe that President W. Bush's advisers never corrected his pronunciation of "Nucular". I'm sure that he stuck to it just because changing would be an admission that he was wrong.

Some words ARE pronounced differently in different places. Most Americans say, "ve-hick-les", while in Canada, the "H" is silent - "Ve-ick-les".

My pet peeve has already been mentioned:"I could care less." This is an almost useless statement. A person who cares a little bit could care less and a person who cares very much could care less.
All it tells me when someone says,"I could care less," is that they DO care. It doesn't tell me how much they care.

I thin of Mondegreens as describing misheard lyrics to songs. For the song Mr. Bojangles The Nitty Gritty Dirt Band sang Jerry Jeff Walker's line, "And he spoke right out," as "And the smoke ran out." When they sing the song in concert these days, they use Jerry Jeff's original lyrics.


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Stringsinger
Date: 31 Mar 13 - 11:15 AM

Liberace was the on attributed to "crying all the way to the bank" which was misappropriated to "laughing all the way to the bank". His initial statement was that though he was criticized for his commercialism, it had its compensations.

"Laughing" somehow implies that making money trumps other less mercenary endeavors.


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Airymouse
Date: 31 Mar 13 - 11:08 AM

What a fun thread, which seems to weave through several topics
1) Pronunciation. I grant mispronouncing "pronunciation" is awkward, but mispronouncing "err" in "To err is human" is also embarrassing. Here in the States, thanks to Penn State we've had our fill of news about pedophiles, but all the newsmen mispronounce "pedophile". They use a long E for other common words with the same root, like "pediatrics" or "orthopedic", but they can't handle "pedophile". In theory "conduit" ought to be a two-syllable word, like "biscuit" and "circuit"; has anyone ever heard it pronounced that way? (I've seen this pronunciation in dictionaries, but I never actually heard it.)
2) "Ax" for "ask" Certainly in the past "ax" was perfectly good English; after all "ask" and "ax" come from the old English "Axian"
"oh mother oh mother the daughter replied, I shan't do this thing that you ax, I'm willing to pay a fair price for the tea, but never no threepenny tax"
3) Misheard but accepted. My moniker comes from an old song, which we always sang as "Airymouse Airymouse fly over my head, and you shall have a piece of my bread". Surely the real word was "reremouse"
4) Misspoken. Richard Chase told me that in the old song Lolly-tru-dum he had changed "chattering tongue" to "flattering tongue". Some singers have adopted his change, but "chattering tongue" was used by Shakespeare in The Taming of the Shrew.


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: GUEST,Frank Burns
Date: 18 Jan 10 - 02:33 PM

"Spit and image" is itself an evolved form, carried over from Continental languages, where "esculpido" became "escupido" in the phrase "esculpido y encarnado."


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: s&r
Date: 09 Nov 09 - 07:31 AM

From glossary of mining terms in NE looks to me as though tyum means empty. I don't think it's a mishearing

Stu


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: GUEST,Guest
Date: 09 Nov 09 - 07:16 AM

'Teum' or 'tyum' is the NE English version of Scots 'toom' meaning empty. It's in many ballads.
Compare byeuk for book, cyek for cake. Tyum uns has also been shortened to chummins.
While toom means empty it is etymologically distinct, Scandinavian in origin for all I know.


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 09 Nov 09 - 04:32 AM

Has anyone else an opinion on this discussion between Anne & me, as to whether "tyum uns" in 'Jowl & Listen' is a corruption of "the empty ones" as she thinks, or is a variant of the Scottish word "toom" = "empty" [pronounced with short 'oo' as in e.g. Yorks way of saying 'mum'], as used in Child #210 'Bonnie James Campbell', as I contend may well be the case?


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 08 Nov 09 - 08:06 AM

Anne: toom [which you will find in Chambers Dictionary] has a short middle oo, more like the N Country pronunciation of Mum [or thumb, for that matter — think how a Yorkshireman would say 'rule of thumb'], than of 'gloom'. & I don't quite see how 'empty un' would easily corrupt to 'tyum', which lacks the entire first syllable and ends with a different consonant. So, Occam-wise, I still think my explanation the more simple, if you accept that the u would be pronounced North Country-wise.

The line you quote of the bridegroom dangling his bonnet and plume is from 'Lochinvar', which was Scott's reworking of the traditional ballad of Katharine Jaffray [also in Child, #221].

I think 'Jowl & Listen' & 'Rap her to Bank' are related songs which share some 'floaters', aren't they?

Regards - Michael Grosvenor Myer


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Rumncoke
Date: 08 Nov 09 - 07:29 AM

The song has the chorus

Jowl jowl and listen lad
Hear the coal face working
There's many a marrer missing lad
Because he wouldenae listen lad

It is not rap'er ta bank.

I am not familiar with Child ballads and so can't say - though I like the rhythm of the words, (I've read another poem with the same 'feet' though the only line I am sure of is 'whilst the bridegroom stood dangling his bonnet and plume') - and I have not heard toom for empty.

However would not toom rhyme with gloom, but tyum was pronounced to rhyme with thumb? I have never heard either toom or tyum used in real life - as it were - so I still strongly suspect that tyum uns is t' empty uns - isn't it Occam's razor - the simplest explaination is usually the right one?

Anne Croucher


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 08 Nov 09 - 02:45 AM

BTW Anne - the song you refer to containing 'tyum uns' is, IIRC, 'Rap her to bank', is it not?

Michael


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: MGM·Lion
Date: 06 Nov 09 - 05:48 AM

'I was solomnly told that 'tyum uns' was a dialect work meaning empty tubs in a coal mine.
It is simply misheard t'empty uns, the empty ones.'
Rum'n'coke

Not sure that is right — there is a Scottish & Northern English dialect word 'toom' which means 'empty' — remember the line in the Bonny James/George Campbell ballad [Child#210] - "Toom was the saddle sae bloody to see When hame came his good horse but never came he".


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: michaelr
Date: 05 Nov 09 - 06:27 PM

One that drives me nuts is quite commonly heard: "...one of the only..."

To be "one of" something, there have to be several, while "the only" clearly states that there is only one. Correct usage must be "one of the few".


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Rog Peek
Date: 05 Nov 09 - 03:25 PM

Third line first verse of Streets of London:

Often sung: In his eyes you see no pride, hand held loosely at his side.

Correct wording is ........and held loosely.....

Rog


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: GUEST,Pez
Date: 05 Nov 09 - 11:44 AM

Re "moot"; I've heard someone say, "That's a mute point".

Also, folks usta say "tisk tisk" to express "oh, too bad", or "shame on you", or suchlike. I think it came from the comics, especially Joe Palooka, where the character Humphrey often said "tsk, tsk", a staccato sound made by pulling a bit of air through your teeth with the tip of your tongue (hard to describe in words, but ustabe common when I was a brat-- and I've used that sound for years to call the cat, quietly). So over the years folks read "tsk", caught the meaning from context, but pronounced it "tisk", and it's come into misspeak.

WENZ dee    FEB yew ary    LIE berry    CUE linary    PEW litzer    AIR ee yew dite


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: GUEST,sheryl the k
Date: 22 Jun 09 - 10:39 PM

WOW- this thread has been going for 10 years and no one has mentioned "all the sudden," instead of all of a sudden, or
"ex-specially" - as in, "You look exspecially lovely this evening, darling."

I also had a friend who liked to say things her own way, and one of my favorites is so apropo of today--"We're goin' to Hell in a handbag..."

Yes, it is true that old beatniks say "expresso,"
rather than espresso--as Americanized in the 1940's and 50's, when "pasta" was still macaroni. I personally like the sound of "expresso." (Why, then, do I not like "exspecially?")


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Ref
Date: 22 Jun 09 - 08:28 PM

Going back to the beginning, I've read that the Biblical quote about the camel going through the eye of "A" needle is wrong. It's supposed to be the eye of "THE" needle, that being a reference to a small door set into a city gate for use during the night or times of trouble. To get through "the eye of the needle", a traveler would have to unload his camel or donkey, pass the load through, then coax the balky animal through the small opening. It's not impossible, but it does take a lot of extra effort, which fits the context.


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Rumncoke
Date: 22 Jun 09 - 07:33 PM

I was solomnly told that 'tyum uns' was a dialect work meaning empty tubs in a coal mine.

It is simply misheard t'empty uns, the empty ones.

It is printed as misheard in the song that starts 'Me fether he alus used to say that pitworks more than hewing'

Anne Croucher


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: BK Lick
Date: 22 Jun 09 - 06:14 PM

The whole nine yards about the whole nine yards, including a risqué story
about the fictional Andrew MacTavish and his courtship with Mary Margaret MacDuff.
—BK


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Bill D
Date: 22 Jun 09 - 05:33 PM

*grin*...yeth, indeed. Including thomething beyond a thspell checker.


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: frogprince
Date: 22 Jun 09 - 05:21 PM

There are lotth of thingth to be dearly withed for. : )


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Bill D
Date: 22 Jun 09 - 04:19 PM

do note that Margo started this 10 years ago...
I dearly with there was some auto-generated pop-up when a thread more than say... a few months old ...was refreshed.


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Stringsinger
Date: 22 Jun 09 - 04:08 PM

Margo, as I understand it the Eye of the Needle was a passageway in the Mid-East.
Merchants had a hard time bringing their goods through.

I'm glad that we can leave "nookewler" behind.

Stephen Colbert still says "Liberry".

"Irregardless" is another one that is used regardless of its irr-itation.

Then there's "Eats, Shoots and Leaves". (Great book).

From an earlier thread on Wildwood Flower:


"amanita is not only the name of a mushroom, it is also the name of a flower--and, yes, the woman is talking of twining flowers in her hair, throughout the song:

The flower that, along with the islip so blue, is being twined with the singer's "mingles of raven black hair," may have originally been "arrownetta," and that name may well have been a colloguialized version of "aronatus," just as folks nowadays often say "gladiola/gladiolas" instead of "gladiolus/gladioli." (I know folks who call that long green vegetable "asparagrass," too.) It also appears in some versions as amaranthus, emanita, amanita, and emelita. Other versions have it as "...the pale oleander and islip... ." The point is that the song was about putting flowers in her hair--even if the flower names were not the official ones in botany textbooks, and somehow the line got mondegreened into "the pale and the leader and eyes look so blue."

The original botanical reference from Maude Iving's song "I Will Twine Midst the Ringlets"
was "the pale Aranautus with eyes of bright blue". From the botanical knowledge from Sam Hinton, there exists no such flower. It must be truly "wild".

Frank Hamilton


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: GUEST
Date: 22 Jun 09 - 03:39 PM

moot point is correct cxoming from a law student exercise called a moot court. Ponts made there may be impressiver, convinvcing and even valid or true, but becuase the trial is not real, the point of obsessing about it came to be known as "moot" when somethiong doesn't really matter no matter how eloguently stated.


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: GUEST
Date: 24 Sep 07 - 10:15 AM

Oops!if the Internet says it doesn't know the origin I must be in error...


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 24 Sep 07 - 10:04 AM

9 Yds no known origin for definite.
G.


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: GUEST
Date: 24 Sep 07 - 10:00 AM

Has no-one answered the"whole nine yards" yet?
I heard it came from the belt-loaded machine gun.
9 yds sounds a lot but allowing 0.5 in for a 0.3 or 303inc clip that's approx 650 rounds-i.e 1 min.firing for a vickers or c.40 sec for a ww2 airborne browning.


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Celtaddict
Date: 23 Sep 07 - 10:49 PM

I say 'Feb-ru-ary' (but I am often accused of being a latent English teacher and my father was a known pedant in the very best sense of the word), but in this area I usually hear 'Feb-yoo-rary' which does not make a lot of sense given the spelling.
But does anyone say 'Wed-nes-day'? I typically hear 'Wens-dee' and usually when I am speaking that is close to the way it comes out.


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: GUEST,Declan
Date: 23 Sep 07 - 08:18 AM

One phrase I often hear used nowadays which drives me bananas (anyone know the derivation of that one?) is "The proof is in the pudding".

The correct phrase as I know it is "The proof of the pudding is in the eating", which makes sense.

Someone referred earlier to American hyperbole. An Irish sports commentator recently used that word, but pronounced it Hyper-Bowl. Sounds like a good name for an American Football trophy to me. I wouldn't be surprised if there was already one with that name.


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Ebbie
Date: 23 Sep 07 - 01:27 AM

Since no one has yet responded to your observation, Giok, (The whole 9 yards is an expression from American football surely?) I will. :)

No, it would not refer to American football,imo. Nine yards in football is not significant- it has to be ten yards (for another 'down'). Nine yards is close but no cigar- to quote another phrase.


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: GUEST, Mikefule
Date: 22 Sep 07 - 04:16 PM

Turnpike, old word for a toll road. Thus gypsies are sometimes called "pikeys" as in "turnpike sailors". (Travelling as they do from place to place, under canvas, and wearing gold earrings.)

The eye of a needle. At school I was taught it was the smallest gate out of a city. Thus the camel would have to get rid of its baggage to get through, just as the rich man would have to divest himself of his worldly goods to gain access to heaven. The explanation seemedto me to be a bit "retrospectively applied" even when I was about 7 years old!

"I should coco..." = I should think so, but said sarcastically and knowingly to mean, "I shouldn't think so, would you?"

"Not on your Nellie" = "Not bloody likely". No I certainly won't.

Sweet Fanny Adams. I once heard that this expression used to mean corned beef, as a grim reference to the fate of Fanny Adams who was murdered and butchered. "Sweet Fanny Adams" by extension meant "not much" or "the bare minimum". By convergent development of slang, when "Sweet F*** All" became a common expression, and then "Sweet FA", the older expression "Sweet Fanny Adams" came to mean "nothing at all". Possibly!


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 22 Sep 07 - 03:39 PM

Perzackly Amos.


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Amos
Date: 22 Sep 07 - 03:20 PM

...who thinks Febyewry is the seccon munf in a newklear winter.


A


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Ron Davies
Date: 22 Sep 07 - 02:25 PM

The sort of person who would pronounce it "Feb-yew-ary" is our dear Chickenhawk in Chief.


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 22 Sep 07 - 01:03 PM

Somebody asked,

Where has the logic gone?"

Long time passing.

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 22 Sep 07 - 01:00 PM

Well Dave you do better than many of the folks this side of the pond, who seem to think it's pronounce Feb-ewe-arry, boy does it piss me off too!
Giok


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Uncle_DaveO
Date: 22 Sep 07 - 12:57 PM

Mark Ruffe, I'm from Minnesota, and I do indeed say "Feb-ru-ary".

Dave Oesterreich


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 22 Sep 07 - 07:59 AM

The whole 9 yards is an expression from American football surely?
G


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Paul Burke
Date: 10 Aug 05 - 05:05 AM

"The whole nine yards" is typical American hyperbole. The British version is "the whole nine inches".


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: GUEST, Hamish
Date: 10 Aug 05 - 04:50 AM

"The whole nine yards"? Meaning genuine. A kilt is made out of nine yards of cloth - all those pleats. Kilt-like skirts may be made out of less cloth.

As far as I am aware, that's where the expression comes from.


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Subject: RE: Misspoken, misheard, but accepted.
From: Flash Company
Date: 09 Aug 05 - 07:00 AM

Oh, Uncle DaveO, How I agree with you! We have a friend who has a son who is a Deputy Head at a Comprehensive School in the UK. She is always telling him off for poor punctuation and spelling, and he always says 'It doesn't matter'
She once asked him, So that means that 'What is this thing called love?' means the same as 'What is this thing called, love?' does it.
His reply 'Now you are being pedantic'
Incidentally, the one that really grates with me, used frequently on TV by people who are supposed to be experts, is 'Drawring' for 'Drawing'

FC


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