Fireplug; LA Times & Chicago Tribune

Arnold M. Zwicky zwicky at CSLI.STANFORD.EDU
Thu Feb 5 03:35:50 UTC 2004

On Feb 4, 2004, at 6:01 PM, Bapopik at AOL.COM wrote:

> ...   I've very, very, very rarely heard "fireplug."

interesting.  i'm significantly older than barry, but not so far in
geographical origins from him.  and when i was a kid (long long ago, in
southeastern pennsylvania), "fireplug" was to "fire hydrant" as "car"
was to "automobile"  (and only "fireplug" had metaphorical extensions,
to body type or penis shape, for instance).  now, i think, the
originally more technical-register term has pretty well covered the
territory, except of course for those conventionalized metaphorical

arnold (zwicky at

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