Date: Tue, 28 Oct 1997 16:51:29 -0500
From: "Donald M. Lance" engdl[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]SHOWME.MISSOURI.EDU
Subject: Re: Rat's -ss
(If so, research needed, unless someone turns up a written treatment.)
Maybe there's a military tie-in, as was suggested on the list last night --
dictionaries of slang and the like list a lot of miltary expressions that
Maybe unrelated (???) is the British expression "rat-arsed," meaning really
drunk, which goes back to around 1980 or so.
Where is Barry Popik now that we need him? His informational input far
exceeded his personal commentaries, but ads-lers didn't respond to his
implicit lexico-dialectal questions as diligently as they have to a couple
of emotional items in recent days.