[Ads-l] Word: bio-break, biobreak, bio break (Aug 7 1991)

ADSGarson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Mon Jun 27 21:15:16 UTC 2016

While listening to "How Google Works" by ex-CEO Eric Schmidt and
Jonathan Rosenberg I heard the word "biobreak". The Merriam-Webster
website discussed this topic in a column about "Words We're Watching".


[Begin excerpt]
Bio Break
A short break in a meeting or event so participants can use the restroom
[End excerpt]

The Merriam-Webster article also stated:

[Begin excerpt]
Bio break is a word that dates back to the mid-1990s. Wired reported
in 1994 that it was "techie slang for using the bathroom," and while
it's become common in some business settings, it's still emerging
among general users. We have seen a gradual uptick in its use in
recent years.
[End excerpt]

The "Wired" article containing the word was published in July 1994 and
was titled "Jargon Watch" by Gareth Branwyn.

It's mentioned in the 2004 "Word Spy" book, but I did not see a
citation. Also, I did not see an entry at the "Word Spy" website.

Below is a citation from August 1991 that appeared in a Usenet
newsgroup dedicated to discussion of fantasy-role-playing games.

Source: Usenet
Newsgroups: rec.games.frp
Subject: Re: Player's Tricks of the Trade
From: co...  domain @Nephi.Enet.DEC.Com (Rodent of Unusual Size)
Timestamp: August 07 1991, 12:11:52 GMT


[Begin excerpt]
One thing I started doing recently (about 1986, I think ;-) is to keep
a logbook/diary of what happens.  It means we have to stop play fairly
often so I can catch up, but everybody uses the time to take a bio
break or stretch or something, so it's not an utter loss.
[End excerpt]

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

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