Decongestant; Hot-Dog Drag Racing

Bapopik at AOL.COM Bapopik at AOL.COM
Sun Apr 15 20:27:56 UTC 2001


   These NYHT obituaries are just great!
   OED has this word from 1950, but with no mention of the following.  Merriam-Webster has 1947.
   From the NEW YORK HERALD TRIBUNE, 6 August 1964, pg. 12, col. 2:

_Harold D. Frazee Dies;_
_Coined "Decongestant"_
   Harold D. Frazee, renowned in the advertising field for his promotions of proprietary drugs and especially for making "decongestant" a household word, died yesterday...
   Mr. Frazee created "decongestant," a substantival derivation from Webster's adjective "decongestive," as a part of the advertising campaign he conducted for Dristan tablets and mists, used in relieving nasal disorders, while he was associated with the Tatham-Lord agency.
   He left that agency in 1962...


   From THIS WEEK magazine of the NYHT, "Z-Z-Z-Z-ZOOM!  What takes off faster than a jet plane?  A hot dog in a hot rod--on a drag strip," 16 August 1964, pg. 10, col. 2:

   The word "drag" goes back to the bad old days (the NHRA stoutly maintain they're over) when duck-tailed types in hot rods would, when stopped for a light, address a knightly challenge to each other: "Wanna drag, punk?"
   The kings of the drag strips are weirdly spidery mechanisms called AA "fuelers."  (They burn an exotic mixture instead of gasoline.)  (Col. 3--ed.)  These are sometimes called "slingshots" or "rails" but you're in danger of being considered a square if you use last month's jargon on hip dragsters.
(Col. 4--ed.) ..."the car always feels doggy (trans: sluggish)..."
(Pg. 11, col. 1--ed.)
   _"Hot dog"_
   Another "hot dog" (trans: very fast driver) who gets paid to show up to drive is Bob Vodnik, who won the National Championship in 1963.

(The Bush Administration has recently accused the Chinese pilot of being a "hot dog" with his plane--ed.)


   That song line is almost in the NEW YORK HERALD TRIBUNE, 5 August 1964, pg. 17, cols. 1-2:

   _John Crobsy Abroad_
_It's Hep To Be Square_

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