Grind House

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Fri Mar 30 20:52:08 UTC 2007

That's what Kofi said. :-) Good one, Joel! My experience re "grinding"
also being a kind of dance once popular among the adolescenti is the
same as yours. What's the current dance called, wherein the chick
bends forward at the waist and grinds her arse against the guy's
crotch? Would that there had been such a dance in the '50's! Now that
I fantasize, uh, think, about it, the dance could still be called


On 3/30/07, Joel S. Berson <Berson at> wrote:
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       "Joel S. Berson" <Berson at ATT.NET>
> Subject:      Re: Grind House
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> At 3/30/2007 04:16 PM, Wilson Gray wrote:
> >The late, lamented John Lee Hooker's "Grinder Man," is clearly about
> >sex - cf. also the traditional BE brag, "They call me 'Coffee' 'cause
> >I grin' so fine!"
> Actually, they call me "Coffee" because I was born on a particular
> day of the week.
> >And Muddy Waters once asked in song, "What's the
> >matter with the mill? The mill won't grind," i.e. "I'm suffering an
> >attack of 'dead bone'," to borrow the felicitous term of the National
> >Lampoon. So, I conclude that BE "grind house" and WE "grind house"
> >have different origins having nothing to do with each other.
> I'm WE, but I certainly heard "grinding" referring to dancing in my
> youth.  (A sense not in OED2?  My HDAS is at the library.)  I can't
> swear to hearing "grind house", but I would certainly have understood
> "burlesque house" as one possible sense if I had.
> Joel
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