Date: Wed, 14 Jun 1995 10:43:23 -0500 From: "thomas j. creswell" Subject: meddle In 1948, when I was teaching 6th grade in an all-black school on Chicago's South Side, a common complaint I heard, but at first did not understand, was "Teacher, Henry (or some other name) meddlin' me." Another, heard somewhat less frequently, was "Teacher, Henry, signifyin' me." I soon learned that "meddlin'" referred to any physical activity--hitting, pinching, hair-pulling, or the like; and "signifyin'" referred to verbal attack--name-calling, teasing, etc. Note that in both cases these were transitive verbs. Perhaps I was naive, but, as far as I remember, "meddling" did not at any time have any sexual connotation. Tom Creswell