"hook up with" in England ...

Laurence Horn laurence.horn at YALE.EDU
Wed Jan 16 18:36:03 UTC 2013

On Jan 16, 2013, at 1:24 PM, Joel S. Berson wrote:

> but uttered by an American.
> " I visit my cousins in England every summer ... On my last night
> there [somewhere in England, last summer], we went to a club where
> foam was coming out of vents, and we all went into the foam and
> danced. He [the subject's cousin's boyfriend's best friend] started
> touching me, and we went to another section and hooked up. Then he
> said, 'Can this be our little secret?' I asked why, and he said,
> 'Well, because I have a girlfriend.' "
> I suppose I shouldn't be surprised about what can happen in another
> section of a club with foam somewhere in England.
> From "Dear Margo," Boston Globe, Nov. 6, 2012.
> Joel
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

Not originating there, though, as far as I know.  The "hooking up with" part, I mean--for all I know, the foam part of may indeed be unique to Old Blighty (and perhaps explains the Stiff Upper Lip).  The OED entry, at Draft additions December 2005--

to hook up
orig. and chiefly U.S. Cf. sense 4e.
 1. intr. To get married or become involved in a romantic relationship; to engage in sexual activity. Usu. with with.

--doesn't include British entries, FWIW, and I don't have my HDAS H-O on me at the moment, but I would hazard a guess that the sexually enriched (but foamless) "hook up with" sense is U.S. in origin.  It is just a guess, though.


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

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