New BE slang?

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at YAHOO.COM
Tue Nov 1 02:36:38 UTC 2005

By sheer coinkydink, I just read a passage yesterday in which a woman was described as a "scalawag."  Believe it or not, you young whelps, I can't remember where I saw it, but it was an old (pre-1930) source, and didn't strike me as odd.  Uncommon, maybe.

George Ade (and others) used "main squeeze" over a century ago to designate "the person in charge; boss."  So how the term came to be applied to wives and then steady girlfriends is hardly a mystery.  (With a little associational help from the huggy kind of "squeeze," of course.)


Wilson Gray <hwgray at GMAIL.COM> wrote:
---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
Sender: American Dialect Society
Poster: Wilson Gray
Subject: New BE slang?

Wife, v. defined by speaker as, "Make a woman your main squeeze."
Speaker also used "scalawag" as a disparaging term for a woman.

Given that the speaker was about the right age to be my grandson, I
was quite surprised to discover that "main squeeze," a slang term two
days older than water, is still in use.
-Wilson Gray

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