Posted by: episystechpubs | June 17, 2014

Editor’s Corner: She’s Got Steve Buscemi Eyes

Since many of you seemed to enjoy the Game of Thrones archery and English lesson last week, I’d like to drag you along into another world I like to visit—that of the Boardwalk Empire. This show is set in the 1920s (it actually starts with the 18th Amendment going into effect) and the results of Prohibition. Not only do they do a great job with the sets, the clothes, and history, but the language is very interesting. (No, not the four-letter words; I’m familiar enough with those.) Here are a couple terms of note for you to consider.

From Merriam-Webster:

red cent

1: cent 1b; specifically: a large copper U.S. cent of the series coined 1793–1857

2: a trivial amount: penny, whit

Example: I wouldn’t pay one red cent for that watered-down whiskey!

Some sources say that the phrase comes from the colors of the pennies themselves, which contained a different mix of copper and nickel and turned redder as they were handled by more people. Others say that the term came from the “Indian Head penny” that was issued from 1864 into the early 20th century; the “red” part of the cent came from the slang term for Native Americans, “redskin.”

“Indian Head” Penny

From Wikipedia:

bloviation, bloviating
A style of empty, pompous political speech particularly associated with Ohio due to the term’s popularization by United States President Warren G. Harding, who described it as "the art of speaking for as long as the occasion warrants, and saying nothing." The verb "to bloviate" is the act of creating bloviation. In terms of its etymology, according to one source, the word is a "compound of blow, in its sense of ‘to boast’ (also in another typical Americanism, blowhard), with a mock-Latin ending to give it the self-important stature that is implicit in its meaning."

Warren G. Harding

Kara Church

Technical Editor, Advisory


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