Date: Fri, 19 Jan 1996 00:41:59 -0500

From: Ronald Butters amspeech[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]ACPUB.DUKE.EDU

Subject: rat pack

Here's a passage that's got me puzzled:

New Year's is a time to stand back and take stock (or divest, if you

happened to have bought shares of Caere Corp. in the past six months).

The Rat Pack is another rodent lighter, and luckless taxpayers are


waiting for the gates to open at Yellowstone and the immigration


Could someone please tell me what's a rodent lighter? An upsized version

of those Gokiburi Hoi Hois or something?

A lighter is a large flat-bottomed boat to carry cargo over short distances

or between cargo ships and docks. (American Heritage). Assumedly, there's

also a pun on the year of the rat and the pack of rats in Washington, DC.


Benjamin Barrett

"The Rat Pack" was the name given inthe 1960s (or earlier?) to a bunch of

Hollywood playmates that included Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Junior, and

Frank Sinatra. I assume that the "rodent" is Dean Martin, who died this

year. Indeed, Sinatra (age 80) may be the only rat left. (?)