Date: Sun, 17 Apr 1994 10:14:00 EDT
From: "David A. Johns" DJOHNS[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]UFPINE.BITNET
Subject: ink pen, basement
[Natalie Maynor maynor[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]RA.MSSTATE.EDU ]
# This discussion of "ink pen," a term I tend to associate with my
# elementary school days long ago (early '50s), has reminded me of
# the use of "basement" for a school restroom. Was that term used
# all over the U.S., or was it Southern? Presumably it got started
# from having restrooms in basements, but the term was used in my
# generation when restrooms were not in basements.
# --Natalie (maynor[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]ra.msstate.edu)
"Can I go to the basement?" was the normal request when I was in
school in the 50s, in western Massachusetts. In my elementary school
-- um, grammar school -- the bathrooms *were* in the basement. In
high school they weren't, but I'm sure we still used the same word.
[THOMAS L CLARK tlc[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]NEVADA.EDU ]
# I recall using ball-point as an adolescent (from [AT SYMBOL GOES HERE] seventh
# grade), but am pretty sure I never used "fountain" for fountain
# pen. After about the sixth grade, we weren't allowed to have
# fountain pens (1947 or 48). WWII had pretty much made the
# ball-point ubiquitous. This was in Montana.
# tlc[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]nevada.edu
Interesting. In my high school, ten years later, we still weren't
allowed to use ballpoints at all. It was probably the doing of the
local clothing merchants, who got to replace all the shirts ruined by
leaking fountain pens.
Also on INK PEN: I have yet to hear that term here in South
Georgia, even though it is definitely "pin = pen" territory. I get
lots of misspellings like SENSE for SINCE, and my favorite, I'D GO TO
ANY LINKS TO ..."
In determining rules for in-class compositions, my students always
seem to ask whether they should write IN INK or IN PENCIL.