Date: Wed, 23 Jul 1997 10:08:22 -0500

From: wachal robert s rwachal[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]BLUE.WEEG.UIOWA.EDU

Subject: Amelioration of 'suck' and other such

Did anyone notice the use of 'suck' in Dilbert a few days ago?

Someone remarked on the amelioration of 'getting shafted/screwed' and the

like last week. Does anyone have a list of body-specific or sexual

activity- specific words or expressions that have generalized or softened?

I mentioned at the recent DSNA meeting that young kids, even those who are

good spellers, writing about someone being "pist" because they are unaware

that it is from 'pissed off'.

Perhaps the person who wrote about this could repost to me directly:

robert-wachal[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]

Ron Butters and I have both (but independently of each other) discussed in

legal cases the possible origin of 'suck' as an expression of general


Apparently 'suck' has become so common that it's possible allusion to

fellation has become obscure.

I've even heard people use 'brown nose' in apparent innocence of its


Any thoughts on these matters, friends and colleagues?

Bob Wachal