Random memory: _rule_ "ruler"

Wilson Gray hwgray at GMAIL.COM
Wed Jul 3 19:32:06 UTC 2013

When I was in grade school, we called the ordinary foot-rulets that we used
"rules." This was (is? also the usual BE word. The trivial amount of
interest lies in the fact that these rulers were Coca-Cola gimmes. On the
back of each ruler was the "Coca-Cola" logo and the words:

Do unto others as ye would have them do unto you

My impression is that this was meant as a pun - both the tool and the adage
are "good rules" - and, given that Co-Cola is a Southern company, perhaps
this "rule" instead of "ruler" was (is?) a Southern regional use and not
just a black thing. This use of "rule" for "ruler" isn't in DARE. But,


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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