Mexican Strawberry; La Mordida

Bapopik at AOL.COM Bapopik at AOL.COM
Fri Sep 21 13:39:08 UTC 2001

   The great Mike S. (from Chicagah) is back on the list!  For Mike and the OED, here are two Mexican "M" entries.
   I'll try to give you a Clementine Paddleford "Margarita" and "Chicago Pizza" soon.
   If he hadn't been following:  the "hot dog" war is over and the "Tad Dorgan" myth is officially dead.  However, the Chicago 1893 World's Fair "Windy City" myth forever continues.  I told the Chicago Tribune in June, then the Columbus Dispatch in July, then the Organization of News Ombudsmen, then the Chicago Tribune got it wrong again in August, then I went ballistic...


   OED can receive this help from DARE:  "See _strawberry cactus_."  There is one hit on the MOA database from the 1850s.
   From HOW AMERICA EATS, "ALBUQUERQUE: The Pink Bean," THIS WEEK, NEW YORK HERALD TRIBUNE, 6 March 1949, pg. 48, col. 2:

   SOMETHING to behold is the southwesterner's appetite for the pinto.  That's the bean called pink, called frijole, called the Mexican strawberry.


   From THIS WEEK, NYHT, 12 December 1948, pg. 34, col. 1:

_That's the Mexicans' pet name for the tradition_
_of bribery--but it no longer signifies affection._
_Now press and government are swinging into action_
   That's the bribe--or, as the Mexicans call it, _la mordida_.  Springing from the perpetual pinch of poverty, the _mordida_ has been an age-old custom so generally accepted and so widely practiced that it long ago gained the orthodoxy of an institution.

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