[Ads-l] "short-bus people"

ADSGarson O'Toole adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM
Thu May 20 12:42:12 EDT 2021


The Usenet database has many instances of "short bus" as a technical
term for computer hardware. I am too lazy to manually screen them out,
so this citation can probably be improved.
Below is an August 1991 citation for "rides to school on a short bus".

Usenet group: rec.humor
Article title: List: Phrases that mean CRAZY
Sender: David Build Caudle
Time-stamp: Aug 29, 1991, 6:11:44 PM
https://groups.google.com/g/rec.humor/c/cwD66KcVuCs/m/ptgUtRE2dUoJ

[Begin excerpt]
Thanks to everyone who sent in their phrases. A few people noted
that someone had done this several months ago; even so, the
responses I got supplied several that weren't on this 'original' list,
which was sent to me by Barry Gunn and appears at the end of my
accumulated list. I decided to ignore this list and pretend that my
list was the first, so a few phrases in my list are duplicates in the
original list.

Seems like the most reported phrase was "a few sandwiches short of
a picnic", which was first sent to me by Deveron (name?).

Anyways, here it is...
-------------------------------------------------------------------------
From: David Caudle <SAS... at vm.sas.com>
toys in the attic
not playing with a full deck
not rowing with both oars
has a few pages stuck together
puzzle is missing a few pieces
basket case
gone fishing
bats in the belfry
has a few loose screws
rides to school on a short bus
[End excerpt]

Garson

On Thu, May 20, 2021 at 12:28 PM ADSGarson O'Toole
<adsgarsonotoole at gmail.com> wrote:
>
> Good job Bill, Dave, and everyone. Here is a Usenet citation from
> December 1992 for the phrase "Rides to school on a short bus".
>
> Usenet Group: rec.humor
> Poster: Frank Reid
> Time-stamp: Dec 16, 1992, 5:14:10 PM
> https://groups.google.com/g/rec.humor/c/b0tBYPAOphY/m/pJTL63QnkD0J
>
> [Begin excerpt]
> THE LAST FULL-DECK LIST
> [started a few years ago by someone else, updated by me.]
>
> A bad spot on the disk.
> A bun short of a dozen.
> A couple of open splices.
> A couple of volts below threshold
> A couple of revisions behind.
> A cup and saucer short of a full place setting.
> . . .
> Rides to school on a short bus.
> Running on empty.
> Runs squares around the competition.
> Sailboat fuel for brains.
> [End excerpt]
>
> Garson
>
> On Thu, May 20, 2021 at 10:43 AM Jonathan Lighter
> <wuxxmupp2000 at gmail.com> wrote:
> >
> > We walked too - or took the city bus. As a result our few school buses were
> > all small (now that I think of it), about like a modern SUV. But I'd never
> > think of calling them "short" (too weird).
> >
> > JL
> >
> > On Thu, May 20, 2021 at 10:04 AM Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at yale.edu>
> > wrote:
> >
> > > I wonder if this “short dog” for ‘short bus’ is related to “riding the
> > > dog” for taking the Greyhound (or by extension another long-distance bus.
> > > I wonder how old that is; I looked for “dog” = ‘(Greyhound) bus’ in Jon’s
> > > extensive (three-page) entry for “dog”, which has lemmas for everything
> > > from penises and D grades and of course homely or lazy people, to worthless
> > > horses and venereal diseases, but didn’t see any relevant glosses, but I
> > > might have missed the bus.
> > >
> > > As far as my own familiarity—like Jon, elementary school in NYC in the
> > > ‘50s and no familiarity with the expression until I read reviews of the
> > > aforementioned movie “Shortbus” came out that explained the reference.
> > >
> > > LH
> > >
> > >
> > > > On May 20, 2021, at 9:30 AM, ADSGarson O'Toole <
> > > adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM> wrote:
> > > >
> > > > I vaguely remembered hearing about a short story that referred to a
> > > > short bus as a short dog. Eventually, my memory was coaxed into
> > > > revealing the name of the famous story which used "short dog" in the
> > > > title. A bibliography for James Still, the author of the tale,
> > > > indicated that the story was first published in 1951.
> > > >
> > > > Short story title: A Ride on the Short Dog
> > > > Author: James Still
> > > > [Begin excerpt]
> > > > The vehicle was scarcely half the length of regular buses—The Short
> > > > Dog everybody called it.
> > > > [End excerpt]
> > > >
> > > > http://faculty.csupueblo.edu/sandy.hudock/biblio.html
> > > > A James Still Bibliography
> > > > "A Ride on the Short Dog." Atlantic 188, no. 1 (July 1951):55-58.
> > > >
> > > > Garson
> > > >
> > > > On Wed, May 19, 2021 at 11:04 PM Peter Reitan <pjreitan at hotmail.com>
> > > wrote:
> > > >>
> > > >> Pretty certain we had a short bus for special ed students in my small,
> > > rural hometown that dozens of regular sized busses coming in from the
> > > country in the 1960s.
> > > >> ________________________________
> > > >> From: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU> on behalf of
> > > ADSGarson O'Toole <adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM>
> > > >> Sent: Wednesday, May 19, 2021 6:53:00 PM
> > > >> To: ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> > > >> Subject: Re: "short-bus people"
> > > >>
> > > >> ---------------------- Information from the mail header
> > > -----------------------
> > > >> Sender:       American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU>
> > > >> Poster:       ADSGarson O'Toole <adsgarsonotoole at GMAIL.COM>
> > > >> Subject:      Re: "short-bus people"
> > > >>
> > > -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> > > >>
> > > >> The 2006 edition of Partridge has "ride the short bus" with a first
> > > >> citation in 1995. Further below is a December 1994 citation.
> > > >>
> > > >> Year: 2006
> > > >> Book: The New Partridge Dictionary of Slang and Unconventional English,
> > > >> Volume 2: J-Z,
> > > >> Editors: Tom Dalzell and Terry Victor,
> > > >> Publisher: Routledge: Taylor and Francis Group, New York.
> > > >> Entry: ride the short bus,
> > > >> Quote Page 1615
> > > >>
> > > >> [Begin excerpt]
> > > >> ride the short bus
> > > >> to be mentally deficient US
> > > >> From the literally short bus that special education students use in the
> > > US.
> > > >>
> > > >> Actually, I think our bass player, Frank [Cavanaugh], rode the short
> > > >> bus, but that was 'cause his mom drove it =E2=80=94 Baltimore sun, p.
> > > 8, 28=
> > > >> th
> > > >> September 1995
> > > >>
> > > >> =E2=80=94Chris Lewis, The Dictionary of Playground Slang p 184, 2003
> > > >> [End excerpt]
> > > >>
> > > >> Date: December 31, 1994
> > > >> Newspaper: The Leader-Post
> > > >> Newspaper Location: Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada
> > > >> Article: 'Tak a cup o' kindness for auld lang syne'
> > > >> Author: Ron Petrie
> > > >> Quote Page A3, Column 4
> > > >> Database: Newspapers.com
> > > >>
> > > >> [Begin excerpt]
> > > >> When you're a Scottish laddie on your first day of school and you ask
> > > >> permission go to the bathroom -- "Kin ye lit me oot? I mus' gae my wee
> > > >> nip a tinkle!" -- the teacher immediately brings in a speech
> > > >> pathologist. "Special" is what the pathologist calls you -- "Special
> > > >> Ronnie" -- but deep down you know that soon you'll be riding the short
> > > >> bus to school.
> > > >> [End excerpt]
> > > >>
> > > >> On Wed, May 19, 2021 at 8:31 PM Jonathan Lighter <
> > > wuxxmupp2000 at gmail.com> w=
> > > >> rote:
> > > >>>
> > > >>> Live and learn. Thanks.
> > > >>>
> > > >>> I believe that was the practice even when I was in elementary school,
> > > but
> > > >>> I've never heard the term "short bus."
> > > >>>
> > > >>> JL
> > > >>>
> > > >>> On Wed, May 19, 2021 at 8:18 PM James Eric Lawson <jel at nventure.com>
> > > wrot=
> > > >> e:
> > > >>>
> > > >>>> Derived from the practice of using short(er) school buses to transport
> > > >>>> students with 'special needs'.
> > > >>>>
> > > >>>> On 5/19/21 3:55 PM, Jonathan Lighter wrote:
> > > >>>>> What th' -- ?
> > > >>>>>
> > > >>>>>
> > > >>>>
> > > https://www.yahoo.com/news/qanon-shaman-lawyer-makes-offensive-21443590=
> > > >> 3.html
> > > >>>>
> > > >>>> --
> > > >>>> James Eric Lawson
> > > >>>>
> > > >>>> ------------------------------------------------------------
> > > >>>> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
> > > >>>>
> > > >>>
> > > >>>
> > > >>> --
> > > >>> "If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the
> > > truth=
> > > >> ."
> > > >>>
> > > >>> ------------------------------------------------------------
> > > >>> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
> > > >>
> > > >> ------------------------------------------------------------
> > > >> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
> > > >>
> > > >> ------------------------------------------------------------
> > > >> The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
> > > >
> > > > ------------------------------------------------------------
> > > > The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
> > >
> > > ------------------------------------------------------------
> > > The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org
> > >
> >
> >
> > --
> > "If the truth is half as bad as I think it is, you can't handle the truth."
> >
> > ------------------------------------------------------------
> > The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

------------------------------------------------------------
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