Date: Tue, 24 Sep 1996 16:26:56 -0600
From: Samuel Jones smjones1[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]FACSTAFF.WISC.EDU
Subject: Re: Chinese Fire Drill
DARE I has two senses of Chinese fire drill:
1. A scene of great confusion; a chaotic situation.
Earliest quotation is from 1961.
2. A college prank in which students jump out of a car as it is stopped at
a stoplight, run around the car, and jump back in as the light turns green.
Earliest quotation 1976, reminiscing about the early 1960s.
Joan Hall, DARE
jdhall[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]facstaff.wisc.edu
Howdy, Ms. Hall!
It may be that time is playing tricks with this old thunder lizard's
memory, but I am almost positive that I not only heard but also used the
expression, "rushin' around like a Chinese fire drill" while serving with
the U.S. Navy in the Pacific Theater, during WWII. Does anyone else recall
its usage during the 40's war years? I should like to believe that my
recollection is accurate.
DR. SAMUEL M. JONES INTERNET: smjones1[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]facstaff.wisc.edu
Prof. of Music & Latin American Studies TELNET: samjones[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]macc.wisc.edu
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