Social (was Re: Safire on Contraction)

Sallie Lemons Sallie.Lemons at MSDW.COM
Mon Feb 7 20:42:13 UTC 2000

I went to Columbia and my social security number was my ID throughout. I
don't remember being asked for my "social" there, but I have been
subsequently by anyone requiring it in a variety of places. I assumed it was
a contraction peculiar to NYC where short talk seems the thing, e.g., Rock
Plaza, First Av.

Bookrat wrote:

> At 12:51 PM -0800 2/6/00, Grant Barrett wrote:
> >Here at Columbia University, they (irritatingly) tend to use our Social
> >Security
> >numbers for record keeping. When they need it, they ask for my "social,"
> >without the
> >number, and often just my "sosh" (rhymes with gauche).
> I work at a university library circulation desk, and our campus uses SSNs
> as de facto ID numbers.  The "social" usage is something that I first
> noticed last September; of course, it was probably in use long before I
> noticed it.  It is common usage among our student assistants (all in the
> 20-29 age bracket).
> "Sosh" is something I have heard only from a couple of them (the two
> youngest and most culturally hip ones).
> I have, however, heard "social" in two other circumstances which made me
> realize how widespread it must be:
> 1) In talking to one of my bank's customer service representatives,
> somewhere on the other end of an 800 number;
> 2) In talking to my forty-something brother, in the context of military
> identification numbers which, so I gather, are now the same as SSNs.
> Ken Miller
> Social Correspondent
> The Lostin Times

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