Date: Mon, 22 Dec 1997 19:56:34 -0500
From: Gerald Cohen gcohen[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]UMR.EDU
Subject: Re: "wig out"
Until David Bergdahl's query about "wig out" a few days ago I had never
come across this term. Now I see it in print in the newspaper _USA Today_,
Dec. 22, 1997, sec. B, p.9/1-4; article title: "Microsoft Case Gets Mired
"...'Microsoft is really hoping that people who don't understand the
complexity will wig out,' says
Brett Glass, a computer programmer and consultant for _InfoWorld_.
'They're trying to tie things
into a knot....'"
The meaning of "wig out" here seems to be: "tune out mentally (because of
This, however, is evidently not the meaning of "wig out" as used by
African-Americans; see my ads-l message of 12/21/97 quoting from Clarence
Major's dictionary _From Juba to Jive_. If the speaker of the quote above
(Brett Glass) is not African-American, we would see here the spread of "wig
out" from a purely AA context with an apparent change of meaning. Whether
this new usage takes hold remains to be seen.
gcohen[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]umr.edu