Random Grab Bag

I had mini-posts started on some various language-related topics, but they're not really things I can develop further, and I don't have anything else to talk about (must . . . not . . . jinx . . . Indians), so I figured I would just lump them all together.

  • I was surprised and intrigued by the origins of "If by ___ , you mean blah blah blah, then yes." Assuming Wikipedia can be trusted: If-by-whiskey.

  • When the heck did the word spendy get so popular? Is this all of a part with "teh Interwebs" lingo? I guess not, since the entry in Merriam-Webster claims it originated in 1985 and is chiefly used in the Northwest.

  • It has been brought to my attention that I say "Hot dog!" a lot. I tend to use it in the sense of making an exclamation about a pleasant surprise; usually in lieu of "Awesome!" or "Sweet!" As you can imagine, I have been roundly mocked for this.


  1. But you are in good company. In "It's a Wonderful Life", George Bailey says it every time he grabs the cigar store indian lighter and makes his wish - "I wish I had a million dollars" - and gets the lighter to light. He then exclaims, "HOT DOG!"

  2. Well, I don't say it in a Jimmy Stewart voice, so I guess I have that going for me.

  3. But it's even funnier when said by the bunnies in the 30-Second Bunny Theater. Click on the 3 bunny heads at the end of the clip.