Fwd: retro "psych"

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Mon Apr 25 15:43:55 UTC 2005

At 7:33 AM -0700 4/25/05, Jonathan Lighter wrote:
>"Psych(e) !" was common among schoolkids in the '80s, according to
>contemporary reports.

I take it these are/were always [saik] and not ['saiki], despite the
(alternate) spelling?  The latter, in this context, would really be a
surprise.  I've only ever heard it as [saik], whence the e-less
spelling, just like the popular major.


>"Arnold M. Zwicky" <zwicky at CSLI.STANFORD.EDU> wrote:
>---------------------- Information from the mail header
>Sender: American Dialect Society
>Poster: "Arnold M. Zwicky"
>Subject: Fwd: retro "psych"
>first, an exchange between me and larry horn:
>Begin forwarded message:
>>  From: Laurence Horn
>>  Date: April 8, 2005 7:51:15 AM PDT
>>  To: "Arnold M. Zwicky"
>>  Subject: Re: retro "psych"
>>  At 6:10 AM -0700 4/8/05, Arnold M. Zwicky wrote:
>>>  my Stanford student Tommy Grano reports a use of retro "psych", used
>>>  like retro "not" (by conveying 'I just psyched you out'). this was
>>>  when he was in grade school in Santa Barbara, ca. 1992, and the kids
>>>  didn't continue the usage through later years.
>>>  have you heard of this, or was it (as is entirely possible) just a
>>>  short-lived local fad in a very small language community? if it had
>>>  more general use, it might be worth mentioning on ADS-L.
>>  It's real. I remember it, but mostly from TV shows, as I recall, not
>>  real life. Maybe it really was specifically Californian, including
>>  Hollywood productions.
>Grano now reports:
>>>From last week's issue of the Onion:
>A guy would have to be crazy to try something like that, is that what
>you're thinking? Brother, I'm your worst nightmare. Sure, I have a job
>that pays well right now. You know thatóyou verified my employment
>history. But who's to say I'm going to have that job next year, next
>month, or next week? Hey, I might not even have it tomorrow. In fact,
>I'm feeling like I might just call my boss and tell him off right now.
>Can I borrow your phone? No problem. I have my cell.
>Psyche! See, you've gotta be on your toes around me. How can I take you
>seriously if you frighten that easily?
>with a link to the quoted article (which will only work for another
>couple of weeks or so):
>has this made it into anybody else's files?
>Do You Yahoo!?
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