<3 is in the air--or in NYT presses

Dan Goncharoff thegonch at GMAIL.COM
Mon Jan 10 22:03:18 UTC 2011

I am not sure that anyone who grew up in NY during the establishment
of the media campaign that generated "I ♥ NY" as well as a song that
repeated the lyric "I love New York" many times could read it any way
other than the song lyric


On Mon, Jan 10, 2011 at 4:48 PM, Jeff Prucher <jprucher at yahoo.com> wrote:
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> Sender: Â  Â  Â  American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster: Â  Â  Â  Jeff Prucher <jprucher at YAHOO.COM>
> Subject: Â  Â  Â Re: <3 is in the air--or in NYT presses
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> ----- Original Message ----
>> From: Victor Steinbok <aardvark66 at GMAIL.COM>
>> One interesting thing  about it is that "I ♥
>> NY" (and similar expressions) has evolved into not just  txt "I <3 NY",
>> but into "I [heart] NY", and, finally, into "I heart NY", Â dropping the
>> symbol-signifying brackets.
>> Although "heart" as a verb is  long attested, it never--in its past
>> incarnation--meant "love". Nor was there  any hidden semiotics behind it.
>> OED obviously does not have this new meaning  of "heart" yet.
> Anyone wanting to antedate this usage should search out the 1984
> spoken-word/comedy album "I Gotta Go" by Ian Shoales (of Duck's Breath Mystery
> Theater fame), which includes a track titled "Hearts on Bumperstickers". It's
> basically a rant against the use of the heart symbol on bumperstickers, and he
> explicitly pronounces the symbol as "heart" throughout. After listening to this
> track roughly a zillion times, it became impossible for me (and several of my
> friends) to read "I ♥ NY" as anything other than "I heart NY".  (Antedaters
> beware: Shoales has released at least one other album with the same name which
> doesn't include the relevant track. He also released a book of the same name; I
> don't know whether it includes the relevant piece or not.)
> Jeff Prucher
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