HDAS negative "good thing."

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM
Sun Apr 13 13:28:13 UTC 2014

So the "Und." label should be deleted in future editions.

(Har, as they say, har.)

BTW, it reminds me one of my grandmother's favorite sayings: "They saw you

(I.e., "The minute they laid eyes on you they recognized you for a sucker.
You idiot.")


On Sun, Apr 13, 2014 at 2:39 AM, Wilson Gray <hwgray at gmail.com> wrote:

> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> -----------------------
> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> Poster:       Wilson Gray <hwgray at GMAIL.COM>
> Subject:      HDAS negative "good thing."
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> _Und._ a person who may be easily or profitably ... exploited,
> with cites only from 1907 and 1984.
> "You let people use you for a natural good thing!" was one of my mother's
> favorite imprecations. That "good thing" clearly was intended to be a
> straight-up insult, not sarcasm or irony, was always a source of confusion,
> since I knew the term otherwise only with its expected positive meaning and
> she was the only person that I've heard use it negatively and I've never
> seen it used negatively in print.
> IAC, Mom's language was just old-fashioned and not just plain crazy,
> apparently.
> Youneverknow.
> --
> -Wilson
> -----
> 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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