End of ADS-L Digest - 30 Apr 1998 to 1 May 1998


From: Automatic digest processor (5/1/98)
To: Recipients of ADS-L digests

ADS-L Digest - 29 Apr 1998 to 30 Apr 1998 98-05-01 00:00:20
There are 10 messages totalling 456 lines in this issue.

Topics of the day:

1. table-bussing (4)
2. Paralegal (Shapiro, 1970) (2)
3. Business terms (from FORBES, 1925)
4. Ellen Johnson's address
5. Hello (1848!?)
6. thole story, etc.


Date: Thu, 30 Apr 1998 15:03:11 GMT+1000
From: David Blair
Subject: table-bussing

Dining-room staff in such establishments as McDonalds, I'm assured,
do a lot of table-bussing. That is, they clear and wipe clean the

I'm also assured that this is a recent import into Australian English
from American English. I had imagined that it was a development of
buss = "kiss", until my colleague Bill Greaves (who's Canadian)
told me about bus-boys. And the OED gives:

Bus-boy: see Omnibus
4. A man or boy who assists a waiter at an hotel, restaurant, etc.

1888 Star 11 Aug. 4/5 To pay to what is known in a restaurant as an
`omnibus', i.e. a lad that clears the tables.
1897 Daily News 19 June 2/6 Omnibuses..apprentices- who wait on the

Is anyone familiar with the use of "bus" as a simple verb or in such
compounds as "table-bussing"? My inadequate selection of American
dictionaries has revealed nothing as yet.

David Blair
Head of School
English, Linguistics & Media
Phone: 02 9850 8736 Fax: 02 9850 6900