Thursday, September 04, 2008

inner dork: so that's where it came from

Ever wonder how phrases become part of our lexicon? You don't? Well I do.

Did you know:

The reason we call letters upper case and lower case is because printers kept (keep)capital letters in the upper case drawers and small letters are kept in the lower case drawers.

Honeymoon comes from the Babylonian era (say, 4,000 years ago) when it was customary for a father-in-law to give his new son-in-law a months worth of mead, a honey-based beer, during a calendar month, which was based on a lunar schedule.

Wetting your whistle comes from English pubs where a whistle was baked into the handle of a mug. When a customer wanted another beverage, they would whistle to the bartender.

Raining cats and dogs comes from the Middle Ages when a thatched roof was common. Animals and vermin would crawl into the thatch, but would often fall through the thatch. This is also where canopy beds come from, the better to protect the sleeper from falling vermin.

The reason the first novels are so dang long is because authors were paid per word, not per book. Ala, the longer the book, the bigger the paycheck. Hence, all those adjectives. Also, the reason for serial novels, all the better to keep the income coming in.

Minding your P's and Q's, this has a lot of variations, but the most common one is that it was bar lingo, for pints and quarts.

That concludes today uselessness.

On a side note: posts three days in a row?!?!?!!? Way to go PG!


limpy99 said...

I can't imagine a bertender today who wouldn't clear the bar with a shotgun if they still baked whistles into beer mugs.

Party Girl said...

Something tells me the mugs would be busted over the patrons heads.