[Ads-l] Early WOTY Contender: Snow Farm

ADSGarson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Mon Mar 2 01:59:27 UTC 2015

Reminiscent of a term that is now largely obsolete:

The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia (1911 edition)

[Begin excerpt]
ice farm

n. A body of water with the necessary buildings devoted to the
production of ice for the market; in India, a place where ice is
obtained by allowing water to freeze at night, in shallow earthenware
pans. Sci. Amer., Jan. 25, 1908, p. 58.
[End excerpt]

They  just need to find a paying market for blocks of snow.

On Sun, Mar 1, 2015 at 8:58 PM, Joel S. Berson <Berson at att.net> wrote:
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       "Joel S. Berson" <Berson at ATT.NET>
> Subject:      Re: Early WOTY Contender:  Snow Farm
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> "Farming" originally meant leasing out a revenue-producing property
> or office to someone.  For example, an official would pay a sum in
> order to have the right to collect a fee, duty, tax, etc. and take a
> commission.  I have no knowledge of whether the lessors of the snow
> farm lands have charged a fee, but certainly the lessees (the state,
> cities, and towns) are not collecting any revenue from their farms!
> Joel
> Despite the Christian Science Monitor's conclusion that snow farms
> are "a solid business arrangement", I don't think anyone
> At 3/1/2015 08:17 PM, Laurence Horn wrote:
>> > On Mar 1, 2015, at 7:45 PM, Baker, John <JBAKER at STRADLEY.COM> wrote:
>> >
>> > If the 2015 word of the year vote were held tomorrow, "snow farm"
>> would probably be a strong contender, although no doubt it will be
>> forgotten by January 2016, unless that is a similarly snowy
>> winter.  The term apparently originates in the Boston area and
>> refers to a lot where snow from highways, etc., is stored until it
>> melts, whether through natural processes or artificial means.
>> >
>> > The earliest example I see is from the Channel 2 News on WESH-TV
>> (NBC) in, implausibly, Orlando, Florida, Jan. 1, 2011 (via
>> NewsBank):  "In Boston, open lots and park spacer are now
>> designated snow farm.  We have a lot of snow we have to put it some
>> place.  We are fortunate enough to identify some lots of land that
>> we can put it in."
>> >
>> > The term seems to have first become popular in 2011, for some
>> value of popular; NewsBank has 20 references to "snow farm" from
>> February 2011, all in or in reference to Massachusetts.  Of course,
>> there are far more 2015 references.  A 2/26/2015 story in the
>> Christian Science Monitor discusses the term and concludes that it
>> is appropriate, noting that "farm" originally meant a solid
>> business arrangement and only later came to mean something growing
>> out of the earth.
>> >
>> >
>>...and in this case the crop is certainly thriving, making the term
>>especially appropriate.
>>The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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