"don't think zebras"

victor steinbok aardvark66 at GMAIL.COM
Fri Feb 19 02:17:21 UTC 2010

Don't know if anyone came across this one--the language (and the
intent) is quite different even if the words are mostly the same:

> when you hear hoofbeats outside your window which do you think of first, a horse or a zebra?

This one is [apparently] from 1979, so it post-dates Garson's find.
But one has to wonder how much variation existed before the proverbial
prescription became fixed.


PS: Yes, the source: according to GB, Coevolution Quarterly, nos.
21-23, 1979 (no issue #, p. 148). Only snippet available, so that's
all the information I have. If anyone's going to try to track it down,
it's at the top of the page with a picture just to the right of it.

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

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