1961 article on teen slang (UNCLASSIFIED)

Benjamin Zimmer bgzimmer at BABEL.LING.UPENN.EDU
Fri Sep 14 17:43:19 UTC 2007

On 9/14/07, Mullins, Bill AMRDEC <Bill.Mullins at us.army.mil> wrote:
> > "Grody" and "murgatroid" are interesting additions to the
> > list of synonyms for "square, n." I've only seen "grody" as
> > an adjective (OED/HDAS 1965), and then with more of a "gross"
> > than "square" sense.
> > "Murgatroid/Murgatroyd" I suppose is just a funny-sounding
> > name like "Poindexter". Cassell's Dictionary of Catchphrases
> > notes that Bing Crosby says "Very good, Murgatroyd" to Bob
> > Hope in Road to Bali (1952), long predating Snagglepuss of
> > "Heavens to Murgatroyd" fame.
> Your original post of the article had "murgatoid" -- was that a typo?

Yes, I should have added a [sic] there. That was a typo in the version
of the article that I consulted on Newspaperarchive -- the article had
"murgatoid" the first time and "murgatroid" the second time. In other
iterations of the article in other papers, it's spelled as
"murgatroid" both times.

--Ben Zimmer

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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