Wuss; Clothes horse

Grant Barrett gbarrett at AMERICANDIALECT.ORG
Tue Feb 1 16:25:25 UTC 2000

On Tuesday, February 1, 2000, Greg Austin <PorchGreg at AOL.COM> wrote:

>This is rediculous blindness to reality.  Almost anyone growing up in the
>60's remembers hearing and using the term, regardless of when someone first
>documented its use in print, it was in very common usage in the mid '60's, at
>least by people my age.

Yeah, maybe, but can you prove it? Words in print are the best proof we have of when
a term was invented, popularized or reached common usage. This isn't journalism;
three people agreeing doesn't mean something is approved as fact. Unfortunately, due to
the unreliability of human memory and humans as witnesses (I think, myself, the only
good witness is the perpetual Fifth Amendment silence of a cat) merely saying
something is or was so is insufficient, though it makes a great way to figure out where to
begin looking.

Grant Barrett
gbarrett at americandialect.org

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