Jay Walk (1911, 1916); Snake Oil (1911)
James A. Landau
JJJRLandau at AOL.COM
Mon Dec 2 15:59:54 UTC 2002
In a message dated 12/2/02 10:27:19 AM Eastern Standard Time, Bapopik at AOL.COM
> This won't exactly get me on Jay Leno
I don't know. Jay Leno might indeed be interested in his eponymous Jay Walk.
> OED has 1917 for "jaywalk." From WASHINGTON POST full text:
> 7 May 1911, WASHINGTON POST, pg. M2:
> _New York Faker's Paradise._
> _METROPOLIS FULL OF RUBES WHO WILL FALL FOR ANY KIND OF SKIN GAME._
> (Kansas City Star.)
> Kansas City used to consider itself a town of jay walkers.
Typical Washington Post ignorance. That should be "jay hawkers", as Kansas
is the "Jayhawk" state.
"Jaywalk" is named after Henry "Jay" Walke, Capt. USN (1808-96), a well-known
naval officer of the Civil War, whose most famous exploit was to "Jay Walke"
the gunboat USS Carondelet past the Confederate fortifications at Island No.
> A facsimile of his
> trail would show that he had pursued a course as crooked as that of a
> with a bun (?) on.
A first guess at the meaning of "with a bun on" would be "intoxicated", but
that simply will not work. As my father told me, since a sober snake is
crooked [note 1], a drunken snake can be used as a straight edge.
- Jim Landau
[note 1} "crooked" in the sense of "sinuous" or "meandering", although
popular confusion with the meaning "dishonest" is why crooks are referred to
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