"Connecring the dots": origin?

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Wed May 5 03:48:57 UTC 2010

Sigh! I *knew* that I should have played the race card! I had very
little expereince with what was usual among white people, back in the
'40's. I grew up in neighborhoods alongside white children. But the
fact that they shared a neighborhood with colored probably ipso facto
made them atypical.
IAC, little girls in the 'hood or at school did *not* wear boots,
jodhpurs, or pants or trousers of any kind, except for "snowpants,"
worn by girls and women of every age *under* their skirts or dresses,
during the cold months. These were always removed indoors. When a girl
reached the 9th grade - the first year of high school within the City
of Saint Louis - only the County had junior highs, grades 7-9 - on
informal occasions, she was then allowed to wear form-fitting Levi's,
made so by putting them on, sitting in a bath of hot water, then
allowing the Levi's to air-dry to shrink to fit her figure. Though it
would have been possible for a girl to slip a knife into a pocket of
her Levi's, she would have had to take the Levi's off to get the knife
out, again. Women of all ages also wore shorts, sometimes *very*
short, such as is the case with the miniskirts and -dresses of today.
Of course, what would have been considered to be an almost
obscenely-short pair of short-shorts on a twenty-year-old girl in the
'40's can be seen on the grandmothers of today. The
half-moon/Daisy-Duke/boody shorts of today, or even an above-the-knee
hemline, would have led to arrest for indecent exposure.

When Bermuda shorts became popular, ca. 1948, so-called "Bermuda
skirts" were provided for girls and women, I saw a girl, perhaps
twelve years old, i.e. about my own age, wearing such a skirt, about
the length of a kilt, only *once*. For all practical purposes, the
Bermuda skirt was just an urban myth. I was one of the few boys even
to have *heard" of this skirt, to say nothing of actually seeing
someone wearing one.

Otherwise, only the skin-tight "pencil" skirt and "sheath" dress, both
of mid-calf length *at least*, with so-called "kick-slits" to allow
walking, permitted women teen-agedgirls any public display of
so-called "sex-appeal."


On Tue, May 4, 2010 at 10:10 PM, Alison Murie <sagehen7470 at att.net> wrote:
> ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Alison Murie <sagehen7470 at ATT.NET>
> Subject:      Re: "Connecring the dots": origin?
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> On May 4, 2010, at 12:31 AM, Wilson Gray wrote:
>> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
>> -----------------------
>> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
>> Poster:       Wilson Gray <hwgray at GMAIL.COM>
>> Subject:      Re: "Connecring the dots": origin?
>> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
>> "Mumbletypeg involves tossing a pocketknife into the ground in a
>> progressively more difficult competition usually limited to two
>> players. If the knife tossed by a player does not stick in the bare
>> ground, the player loses *his* turn."
>> This is the version of mumble-peg [m^m@ pEg] that we played in Saint
>> Louis in the '40's. The possibility that a *girl* might have played
>> this game in those days is *ridiculous*, for any number of reasons,
>> including the fact that girls didn't carry knives or even have pockets
>> in their dresses or skirts in which to carry one, any more than they
>> had six-inch spike heels, thong panties, or WonderBras. I'd bet money
>> that no woman alive today who was alive in those days has any idea
>> what this game is and may not even have heard of it.
>> There really has to be a sensible limit put to this
>> no-"sexism"-in-language crap.
>> -Wilson
>> ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
> You'd lose that bet, Wilson.  I knew about mumbletypeg, had a knife,
> and had boots with a knife pocket, not to mention plenty of pockets in
> overalls, jodpurs & even skirts. No spike heels, thong panties or
> wonder bras (or Victoria's secrets).  'Course I didn't live in St.
> Louis (but my mother was born & grew up there).
> AM
> ------------------------------------------------------------
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