Fwd: Dictionary inclusion of unworthy words ["phat"]

Dave Wilton dave at WILTON.NET
Tue Sep 24 02:21:48 UTC 2002

> The online version of this piece can be found at
> http://abcnews.go.com/sections/wnt/DailyNews/ISOA_Websters020923.html
> ; lexicographers Tom Pitoniak and James Lowe are mentioned by name.
> The etymology of _phat_ is not discussed in the online piece, and I'd
> hope either that Larry completely misunderstood what the lexicographer
> was saying, that the piece was edited to make the lexicographer seem
> to be saying something completely the opposite of what he meant, or
> that someone from M-W or elsewhere will indeed divulge what the
> evidence is for what I think is a stunning claim.

Thanks to Tivo I can tell you that in the on-air version, the segment about
"phat" starts with a clip from (what I believe is) the 1997 movie "Money
Talks" where comedian Chris Tucker defines "phat" as "pretty hot and
tempting." The piece then segues into James Lowe (he is identified by name)
saying, "Our sources indicate that it was an acronym in the beginning
standing for Pretty Hips And Thighs." Perhaps they edited out cautionary
statements by Lowe that preceded or followed this one sentence, but he did
say those exact words. Larry did not misunderstand.

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