More on soft opening; soft/hard left/right

Benjamin Barrett gogaku at IX.NETCOM.COM
Sun Jan 8 21:40:57 UTC 2012

On February 14, 2005, John Baker discusses the term "soft opening," used by retailers to refer to opening for business before making a formal grand opening announcement (

In the Seattle Times today, that meaning is extended to a park.

"Sammamish resident's park gift comes with extra: more land later," Keith Ervin (

Not many residents have discovered the park since its unheralded "soft opening" in October.

This meaning is not in the OED. 

Also, it appears that "hard" and "soft" are not defined in reference to turning. At an intersection where there is more than one left or right possible, the "hard" left/right is the one at the most acute angle, and the "soft" left/right is the one at the most obtuse angle.

Benjamin Barrett
Seattle, WA
The American Dialect Society -

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