to "run numbers"

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM
Mon Oct 3 18:57:31 UTC 2011

Not in OED in any sense.

Long ago, to "run [the] numbers" meant to control or be an employee of an
illegal "numbers game.".

Nowadays, however, it often means simply to "calculate mathematically."

Erin Burnett, CNN: "I learned never to take anything for granted and to
always run the numbers myself."

Grant Barrett used the phrase here a few years ago, but no one took notice.


"If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the truth."

The American Dialect Society -

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