Heard on The judges: "Ripping and running"

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Sun May 1 23:20:46 UTC 2011

On Sat, Apr 30, 2011 at 7:27 PM, victor steinbok <aardvark66 at gmail.com> wrote:
> the survivalist-type, short-handled (about 40 cm long) multi-tool that has a
> digging blade--the type that's sometimes associated with the Soviet/Russian army.

The version used by the U.S. Army in my day - when "Red Army" was
still the only term available for denominating the Soviet Army,
though, as has been pointed out here, "Soviet Army" was already the
*official* term as far back as During The War - was called an
"entrenching tool," thereby avoiding the problem of having to decide
whether to call a spade a spade. <har! ar!> It had a folding blade so
that it could be hung comfortably - yeah, right - from your
pistol-belt (known as a "web[bed] belt," in other branches of service,
I believe). Only officers were issued pistols with holsters for
attachment to this belt.

Does anyone else remember the _Red_ Army Chorus, so-called into the
'60's, at least, despite the official usage?
All say, "How hard it is that we have to die!"---a strange complaint
to come from the mouths of people who have had to live.
-Mark Twain

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

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