1913 "gazipe" newspaper article in full
gcohen at UMR.EDU
Tue Jan 27 17:21:27 UTC 2004
Here's the 1913 "gazipe" item I promised to type in full, spotted by
Douglas Wilson and available on newspaperarchive.com. It's in
_Sheboygan Press_, Wisconsin, 3/25/1913, p. 4/2-3 (a few days
earlier: _Stevens Point Daily Journal_, Wisconsin, 3/20/1913, p. ?;
cols. 2 3) and now appears below my signoff.
[title]: 'Stories from the Big Cities'; [subtitle]: '"Gazipe" Latest
Term for a Wood Pile Denizen'
[col. 2--cartoon shows 4 men, one sitting down and peering towards a
document that a second is holding up for view while pointing to a
word or line on the document and saying: "THERE'S A GAZIPE. SEE IT?"
Two other men are looking on with a concerned intent look, clearly
trying to spot or understand what their colleague is pointing to]
'St. Louis, Mo. -- Gazipe!
'There it is: Look out for it! It will get you if you don't.
Let no guilty gazipe escape.
'The gazipe made its debut at a special performance with the
legislative committee of the city council for an audience. It was
presented by a theatrical manager, Frank R. Tate. The appearance of
the gazipe was unannounced and it created a sensation.
'Discussing the pending bill which would require all St.
Louis theaters to comply with the building and fire protection laws
as amended in 1907, Manager Tate said:
"I can point out the gazipe in that bill."
'The committeemen were astounded. The gazipe came like a
bolt out of a clear sky.
[col. 3] 'With difficulty restraining his emotion, Councilman Leahy asked:
"What is--what is this--ah-hum--this, ah--?
"Gazipe?" snapped Tate.
"Yes. What is a gazipe?"
"Well, I don't know that I can explain it too clearly."
"Who do you spell it?"
"You don't spell it. You look ofr it. I don't know that it
has ever been spelled, but it has been pronounced a million times,"
"Well," said Leahy, "in order that it may be placed on the
official records and in the files of the municipal library we will
spell it g-a-z-i-p-e. Now what is it?"
"Well," said Tate, "I have heard theatrical people use it
very often, but I don't think it's known outside of the profession.
When an actor signs a contract with a manager he always reads it over
several times to look for the gazipe, the little thing which, if left
there, will cause the actor to get the worst of it."
'One of the committeemen suggested that gazipe was something
like "a n----- in a woodpile." [G. Cohen: The n- word is spelled out
in the article.]
'Oh, I see," said Leahy. "It's a 'joker,' a 'stinger.'"'
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