Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Fri Dec 1 04:50:44 UTC 2006

My guess is that he threw that in for laughs, as was the case with
Fats Wallers's "One never knows, do one?" and Godfrey Cambridge's,
"Now, what brand of men's underwear  comes in all the colors of the
rainbow (or words to that effect)? Why, Jockey do!"

BTW, a note in today's ZDNet/Mac has the headline, "Step off,
haters!'' When nerds start using a word or a phrase, you know a story.
[That last is a saint-Louis BE-ism that means something like, "you
attain a fuller understanding of the situation."}


On 11/29/06, Benjamin Zimmer <bgzimmer at babel.ling.upenn.edu> wrote:
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Benjamin Zimmer <bgzimmer at BABEL.LING.UPENN.EDU>
> Subject:      Re: Hastings-haters
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> On 11/29/06, Wilson Gray <hwgray at gmail.com> wrote:
> >
> > On 11/29/06, Benjamin Zimmer <bgzimmer at babel.ling.upenn.edu> wrote:
> > >
> > > In his announcement that he would not seek the chairmanship of the
> > > House intelligence committee, Rep. Alcee Hastings released a statement
> > > ending with this line:
> > >
> > > "Sorry, haters, God is not finished with me yet."
> > >
> > > <http://www.tpmmuckraker.com/archives/002049.php>
> > >
> > > That's presumably the hiphop sense of "hater", short for
> > > "player-hater" (defined by the new OED entry as "a person who is
> > > jealous of the success of others", with cites back to 1993).
> > >
> > > Interesting to hear that term coming from a congressman, as opposed to
> > > a rapper, sports star, etc.
> >
> > No, it isn't. It might not even be interesting, if Hastings were
> > white. But there's certainly nothing interesting about a black person
> > talking black. I've been known to do it myself, from time to time,
> > when circumstances warrant. And "hater" is no longer a shortened form
> > of "player-hater." Like the cheese, it now stands alone.
> Point taken, Wilson. I guess what made it interesting (to me) was more
> the context than the speaker. It wasn't in conversational speech but
> at the end of a formal statement written in the typical register of
> "officialese." (First sentence: "I have been informed by the
> Speaker-elect that I will not serve as the Chairman of the House
> Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence in the 110th Congress.")
> The unexpected stylistic contrast of the "haters" line gives it the
> pizzazz of a good punchline.
> --Ben Zimmer
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

All say, "How hard it is that we have to die"---a strange complaint to
come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
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