[Ads-l] antedating "cloud nine" "cloud seven"

ADSGarson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Sat Nov 14 23:50:59 UTC 2020

Congratulations on your wonderful HDAS efforts, JL.

Following your lead I searched for "cloud eight" and "cloud number
eight". Below is a pertinent match in 1929. The excerpt below concerns
Mel who was playing a card game. He believed that he had a very good
hand, and he had made a large wager. The phrase "Mel was up in Cloud
Eight" apparently meant Mel is elated. The ellipses are in the
original text.

Date: October 7, 1929
Newspaper: The Standard Union
Newspaper Location: Brooklyn, New York
Article: All Around Town
Author: Jack Hoins
Quote Page 8, Column 3
Database: Newspapers.com

[Begin excerpt]
Charlie Sands, Conk, Sammy Hart, Sam Rubenstein and Harry Feeney were
in it with Mel. Sands dealt and Mel got four nines on the deal. Harry
Feeney tossed his hand in and started to "kibitz" with Mel. He told
the old guy to stand pat . . . bluff.

Then Harry advised Mel to raise the bet two or three times around ...
it got big and Mel was up in Cloud Eight ...
[End excerpt]

Below are three more matches for "cloud number eight" and "cloud eight".

Date: September 19, 1936
Newspaper: The San Francisco Examiner
Newspaper Location: San Francisco, California
Article: Success Story: Baritone Former Business Man
Author: Darrell Donnell
Quote Page 11, Column 3
Database: Newspapers.com

[Begin excerpt]
He achieved the not mean feat of nursing all of these corporations
through the depression.
You can't nurse a pump company through a depression and have your head
up in cloud number eight
[End excerpt]

Date: November 25, 1937
Newspaper: The San Francisco Examiner
Newspaper Location: San Francisco, California
Article: 'Good News' Program May Prove Bad News
Author: Darrell Donnell
Section II, Quote Page 3, Column 5
Database: Newspapers.com

[Begin excerpt]
>From the East next Sunday comes Columbia's first serious bid to steal
audience from the Don Ameche, Edgar Bergen-Nelson Eddy Sunday show
which is away up near Cloud Number Eight in the Crossley ratings.
[End excerpt]

Date: November 29, 1937
Newspaper: The San Francisco Examiner
Newspaper Location: San Francisco, California
Article: Shaw Aids Bronc Win Via Sickbed To Field Phone
Quote Page 21, Column 1
Database: Newspapers.com

[Begin excerpt]
All the Broncs came out of the game in good shape. A few of them were
discussing points of the game. . . . Karamatic was given honorable
mention . . . but, for the most part, their heads were up in "cloud
eight" with thoughts about a long train ride.
[End excerpt]


On Thu, Nov 12, 2020 at 5:18 PM Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at gmail.com> wrote:
> Like everybody else, I failed to check HDAS, which includes the following
> in abbr. form:
> 1935 Albin J. Pollock _The Underworld Speaks_  (S.F.: Prevent Crime Bureau)
> s.v.: _Cloud eight_, befuddled on account of drinking too much liquor.
> Also San Francisco. I see a pattern.
> JL
> On Thu, Nov 12, 2020 at 4:52 PM Shapiro, Fred <fred.shapiro at yale.edu> wrote:
> > In an article in the Yale Alumni Magazine and coverage in the New York
> > Times, I have posited a phenomenon of "numerical phrase inflation," where
> > phrases like "whole six yards" or "cloud seven" in time get inflated up to
> > the number nine.
> >
> > Fred Shapiro

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