Date: Wed, 19 Nov 1997 01:02:36 -0500
From: "Barry A. Popik" Bapopik[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]AOL.COM
Subject: AOL features Metcalf-Barnhart book
Here I am, checking AOL news to see if we just engaged in the mother of
all world wars. So what do I see on AOL news?
"Book Documents 'American' Words."
This is from AOL's OnBooks: Literary News and Notes.
Book Documents Words as American as Apple Pie
By Donald M. Rothenberg
of The Associated Press
WASHINGTON--It is OK to sit in the bathtub and think highbrow thoughts about
potato chips and hot dogs. Nifty, in fact, because these are words that are
as American as apple pie.
A pair of word historians have collected their choices of "words that have
shaped America," choosing one for almost every year since English was first
spoken on this side of the Atlantic.
When it came to making a choice for a given year, they tried to select the
word "that made a difference," said Allan A. Metcalf of MacMurray College in
Jacksonville, Ill. They looked for words that reflected "how we look at
ourselves as Americans, what our concerns are and what our ideas are," he
Metcalf and lexicographer David K. Barnhart are co-authors of "America in So
Hot dog is a play on an old joke that dog meat was used in sausages. The
first use of hot dog is traced to the Yale Record in 1895.
This may sound funny, but about three months ago--as I wrote on this
list--this very same Associated Press did a whole story on the hot dog, and
it was completely wrong, and I walked into their offices, and I was told they
weren't going to correct anything....