[Ads-l] Heard: _for days_, an intensifier

ADSGarson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Sat Oct 22 02:04:08 EDT 2016

JL has an entry in Random House Historical Dictionary of American
Slang. Here are the forst three citations.

day n. In phrases:
for days extensively; strikingly; emphatically.—also used
as adj.

1968-70 Current Slang III & IV 50: For days, adv. The truth.

1971 Carr Bad 26: We'd gotten together over three hundred birds...Man,
we had pigeons for days!

1971 in Sanchez Word Sorcerers 179: The coooool-coooool Marcy
Chaplains...was bad for days.


On Fri, Oct 21, 2016 at 11:06 PM, Ben Zimmer <bgzimmer at gmail.com> wrote:
> On Fri, Oct 21, 2016 at 10:45 PM, Wilson Gray wrote:
>> On Fri, Oct 21, 2016 at 4:53 PM, ADSGarson O'Toole wrote:
>> > also days!
>> What does that mean? That people say, "also days!", or that people also
>> say, "days!"
> The latter. Here are the cites for sense 2.
> 1968 [US] ‘Sl. of Watts’ in _Current Sl._ III:2 24: _For days_, adv. The
> truth.
> 1971 [US] H.E. Roberts _Third Ear_ n.p.: _for days_ an expression
> indicating extremes; e.g. I’ve known her for days (I’ve known her for a
> very long time); he was fine for days (he was a very good-looking boy).
> 1972 [US] B. Rodgers _Queens’ Vernacular_ 60: _days_ (exclam) affirmative,
> translated to mean you said it!
> 1978 [US] A. Maupin _Tales of the City_ (1984) 161: It’s the bathroom
> cabinet [...] face creams and shampoos for days.
> 1980 [US] E. Folb _Runnin’ Down Some Lines_ 237: _for days_ 1. Indicates
> extended period of time or great degree (‘That dude was loaded for days!’).
> 2. Indicates a sense of the ultimate (‘That chick is foxy for days!’).
> 2002 [US] ‘Touré’ _Portable Promised Land_ (ms.) 185: Six foot one with
> tight cornrows and curves for days.
> ------------------------------------------------------------
> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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

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