"drunk riding"

David A. Daniel dad at POKERWIZ.COM
Tue Sep 1 19:57:12 UTC 2009

Well, I remember specifically that when my buddies and I were teenagers in
the 60's, one of our number insisted on saying "I drove over here" when he
had come on his motorbike. We razzed and ridiculed him mercilessly, telling
him in no uncertain terms that, "no, you did not drive over here, you RODE
over here." One drove a car and rode a motocycle/bike. Even now, if I try
out the phrase "I'm gonna drive my motorcycle" it just sounds too weird -
you don't drive a bike, you ride a bike, whether motorized or not - and I
would bet it sounds too weird to most, if not virtually all, bikers nowadays
as well. Thus, cop giving drunken biker a drunken riding ticket makes
perfect sense to me. (BTW, I believe that in many places now you can get one
of these for being drunk on a horse, too. Bicycle too? Dunno, but would not
surprise me.)

We've got a long way to go and a short time to get there

-----Original Message-----
From: American Dialect Society [mailto:ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU] On Behalf Of
Wilson Gray
Sent: Tuesday, September 01, 2009 4:28 PM
Subject: Re: "drunk riding"

I share your confusion! A drunk riding alone on a motorcycle isn't
just *riding* drunk. He's also *driving* drunk on a motorcycle, (it)
seem like to me, (as we say in ETX BE; sometimes, it annoys me that I
have not the least idea of what the local white dialect is/was like,
thanks to the *rigid*, Deep-South-style segregation practiced in
Marshall in my day; sadly, according to the blog, _I'm from Marshall,
Texas_, written by a white woman, things really haven't changed much,
since she makes a point of calling Marshall "racist") just as a drunk
riding alone in a car is driving it. Why bleep with the language over
this triviality?


On Mon, Aug 31, 2009 at 8:30 PM, Jonathan Lighter<wuxxmupp2000 at gmail.com>
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM>
> Subject:      "drunk riding"
> I had to see a current public service ad warning against "drunk riding"
> three or four times before I oculd figure it out.  First I thought it
> that it was now unlawful even to ride as a vehicle's passenger if you were
> drunk.
> Stranger laws have been passed.
> But on my latest viewing I realized that the cop in the ad is busting a
> drunk who's riding a motorcycle.
> Get it? Get it?  "Riding" a motorcycle!
> What does it mean?  That law enforcement now believes (or, worse, knows)
> that there are people who think "riding drunk" (on a motorcycle)  is OK
> because they distinguish "driving" from that kind of "riding"?  (The biker
> in the ad isn't carrying a passenger, just a helmet full of beer.)
> What's the answer? Is this a SOTA?
> JL
> --
> "There You Go Again...Using Reason on the Planet of the Duck-Billed
> Platypus"
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