[Ads-l] Chronic

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM
Tue Aug 18 19:16:38 UTC 2015

If "chronic" was in use for marijuana  in 1949 - and commonly enough for
Monteleone to have heard it - I think we would have more evidence of it
before its appearance in the '90s.

Monteleone's book is simply a list of words with brief definitions - more
words than anybody might reasonably expect to hear "in the wild."

As "drug addict," "chronic" appeared earlier  without provenance (and with
other rare terms listed by Monteleone) in Berry and Van den Bark's
well-known slang Thesaurus of 1942.


On Tue, Aug 18, 2015 at 1:58 PM, Brian Hitchcock <brianhi at skechers.com>

> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Brian Hitchcock <brianhi at SKECHERS.COM>
> Subject:      Chronic
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> I always assumed it was wordplay:
>         Chronic User  =3D User of Chronic
>         Ergo, there must be a drug called Chronic.
> And I suspect the stoners thought of this before the 'hard' drug users,
> pro=
> bably because Chronic User was more often applied to stoners, as there was
> =
> not as much need to distinguish between recreational and Chronic users of
> s=
> peed or heroin (IIRC they were usually called "addicts" by the judicial
> and=
>  medical establishments.)  So of course "chronic" had to be some kind of
> ma=
> rijuana.
> Oh, by the way, there is a Chronic Tacos restaurant chain (founded 2002 in
> =
> Newport Beach, CA) which now has more than 30 locations.
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