[Ads-l] HDAS comes through again

George Thompson george.thompson at NYU.EDU
Sat May 30 17:36:25 UTC 2015

A story in today's NYTimes, (May 30, 2015) profiles a 100-year-old retired
NYC police officer, and includes the sentence
"Cops who accepted meals and small offerings were called “grass eaters,” he
said, while “meat eaters” were officers who sought cash payments by shaking
down people who had committed crimes and wanted to avoid an arrest."

When I checked HDAS, I found both terms there, well documented.  This of
course leads me to renew the Curse of the Thompsons, under which Oxford
University Press has lain for some years now.

Seriously, can't ADS-L do anything to persuade the OUP to stop being the
dog-in-the-manger and to return to JL the rights to publish his own
material.  The OED has incorporated the citations into their files, and
chooses not to publish the material in book form.  So give us all reason to
dream that some day someone else will complete HDAS in print.  Actually, at
this point, I'll settle for on-line.

The Curse of the Thompsons is cause for great concern; but the Curse of
ADS-L ought to panic any organization that falls under it.


George A. Thompson
The Guy Who Still Looks Stuff Up in Books.
Author of A Documentary History of "The African Theatre", Northwestern
Univ. Pr., 1998..

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

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