Vals Kilmer (like "attorneys general"?)

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Tue Mar 28 21:26:01 UTC 2006


"Pluck yew"?! Isn't it the bowstring and not the bow itself that an archer
plucks?

-Wilson


On 3/28/06, Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at yahoo.com> wrote:
>
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at YAHOO.COM>
> Subject:      Re: Vals Kilmer (like "attorneys general"?)
>
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> Fox & Friends this a.m. promised that "coming up" would be an interview
> with a history professor who uses infotainment so that "his students say
> they learn more about history" than from any other professor (in the world,
> obviously).
>
>   Teasingly, they didn't mention his name. But they did say he'd reveal on
> camera "the origin of one of our obscene gestures. Hint: it involves *the
> French* !"
>
>   Real life called me away before I could watch the segment, but my
> inbuilt bullcvrap detector tells me that the distinguished historian was
> about to endorse, to all of us out here in TV Land,  the "Agincourt Pluck
> Yew !" theory of digital insult.
>
>   Fox & Friends is the popular morning show whose previous historian
> guests have endorsed the (slightly less nonsensical) "Van Buren theory of
> O.K. origin."
>
>   My own belief, arrived at just this second, is that the cocky and
> defiant "Pluck yew !" incident is also the origin of our word
> "plucky."  Anybody doubt it ?  If so, shut up.
>
>   JL
>
> Wilson Gray <hwgray at GMAIL.COM> wrote:
>   ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> -----------------------
> Sender: American Dialect Society
> Poster: Wilson Gray
> Subject: Re: Vals Kilmer (like "attorneys general"?)
>
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> "Skeptical"? How can this be? Wikipedia, that vaunted repository of all
> human knowledge ;-), believes it. However, I read it somewhere else maybe
> fifty years ago and the story wasn't new, then. And, as we know, stories
> that are around long enough tend to become regarded as "true."
>
> In other words, I'm not quite skeptical, but I don't think that this story
> is necessarily true, either.
>
> -Wilson
>
> On 3/27/06, Jonathan Lighter wrote:
> >
> > ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> > -----------------------
> > Sender: American Dialect Society
> > Poster: Jonathan Lighter
> > Subject: Re: Vals Kilmer (like "attorneys general"?)
> >
> >
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------=
> ------
> >
> > I'm skeptical.
> >
> > JL
> >
> > Wilson Gray wrote:
> > ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> > -----------------------
> > Sender: American Dialect Society
> > Poster: Wilson Gray
> > Subject: Re: Vals Kilmer (like "attorneys general"?)
> >
> >
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------=
> ------
> >
> > Know why a major general is outranked by a lieutenant general, though a
> > major outranks a lieutenant? Supposedly, the reason is that a major
> > general
> > was originally a sergeant-major general and lieutenants outrank
> sergeants=
> .
> >
> > -Wilson
> >
> > On 3/27/06, Jonathan Lighter wrote:
> > >
> > > ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> > > -----------------------
> > > Sender: American Dialect Society
> > > Poster: Jonathan Lighter
> > > Subject: Re: Vals Kilmer (like "attorneys general"?)
> > >
> > >
> >
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------=
> =3D
> > ------
> > >
> > > "To my knowledge, no one ever calls the Surgeon General 'General.'
> > > 'Doctor' is used instead."
> > >
> > > Read all about it: http://www.cardozo.yu.edu/life/spring2003/generals/=
> =3D
> > .
> > >
> > > JL
> > >
> > > Beverly Flanigan wrote:
> > > ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> > > -----------------------
> > > Sender: American Dialect Society
> > > Poster: Beverly Flanigan
> > > Subject: Re: Vals Kilmer (like "attorneys general"?)
> > >
> > >
> >
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------=
> =3D
> > ------
> > >
> > > The Surgeon General is always addressed as General.
> > >
> > > At 01:34 PM 3/27/2006, you wrote:
> > > >I think the question was about how attorneys general are addressed.
> > When
> > > >Alberto Gonzales appears before congress, is he addressed as General
> > > >Gonzales? I think this happens at least sometimes.
> > > >
> > > >-Matt Gordon
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >On 3/27/06 11:43 AM, "Dennis R. Preston"
> > > wrote:
> > > >
> > > > > I guess I don't understand. If he is the attorney for general
> > > > > matters, then he is a "general attorney," just like a court
> martial
> > > > > is court (N) plus martial (adj) a "military court."
> > > > >
> > > > > dInIs
> > > > >
> > > >
> > > > >> ~~~~~~~~~~~
> > > > >> I've no beef with adjectives following nouns, a la francais. This
> > > still
> > > > >> doesn't explain why we address this (general interest) attorney
> as
> > > > >> "General" if it isn't meant as a rank.....?
> > > > >> AM
> > > > >>
> > > > >>
> > > > >>
> > > >
> > >
> >
> ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^=
> =3D
> > ^^
> > > > >> W stands for >:< War ____Waste___Wiretaps____Witchhunts >:<
> > > > >>
> > > >
> > >
> >
> ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^=
> =3D
> > ^^
> > > > >>
> > > > >> ------------------------------------------------------------
> > > > >> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
> > > > >
> > > > >
> > > > > --
> > > > > Dennis R. Preston
> > > > > University Distinguished Professor
> > > > > Department of English
> > > > > Morrill Hall 15-C
> > > > > Michigan State University
> > > > > East Lansing, MI 48824-1036 USA
> > > > > Office: (517) 353-4736
> > > > > Fax: (517) 353-3755
> > > > >
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