Heard on The Doctors: _bug juice_

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Wed Mar 14 23:30:43 UTC 2012

On Mar 14, 2012, at 6:43 PM, Wilson Gray wrote:

> A doctor explains his use of a term:
> "_Bug juice_ is doctor slang for 'anti-biotics'."
> This meaning isn't in HDAS or UD and, as fate would have it, neither
> is the only meaning for _bug juice_ that I know:
> "soy sauce."

Hunh.  For us survivors of summer camp in Maine (early 1950s), and probably elsewhere (and elsewhen), "bug juice" will forever designate oversweetened (if that's not oxymoronic) kool-aid type beverages, almost always red.


> My WAG is that the StL BE meaning is derived from the
> soy-sauce-looking liquid that hoppergrasses regurgitate when you
> capture them, despite the fact that this liquid is itself called
> "tobacco juice" by boyz n tha hood.
> Back in the day, Chinese food was absolutely unknown, behind the sun
> in Marshall. If you wanted to floor-roll your audience with ease, all
> that was needed was to name any Chinese dish: chop-suey, egg fu-yong,
> etc.
> --
> -Wilson
> -----
> All say, "How hard it is that we have to die!"---a strange complaint
> to come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
> -Mark Twain
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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