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blueshammer (2)

What do afghans from Afghanistan look like?

I'm looking for links/books/a place to start researching to find out more about the origin of afghan blankets. I just ordered the yarn to knit a largish blanket of my own design. In thinking of a name for the pattern I got to wondering whether the word "afghan" as applied to blankets really had anything to do with Afghanistan. [more inside]
posted by sparklemotion on Nov 26, 2013 - 7 answers

 

Why was the baseball player Clyde Raymond Barfoot nicknamed "Foots"?

I would like to know the origin of major league baseball player Clyde Raymond Barfoot's nickname "Foots". Can you direct me to a source of information (e.g., a book or website)?
posted by kirsti on Oct 12, 2013 - 6 answers

Out of my window, looking in the night: "Barges" song origin?

What's the story on the traditional Girl Scout song, "Barges"? [more inside]
posted by asperity on Jun 5, 2013 - 14 answers

List of simple word roots

I am looking for a text file of a list of words (roughly the 5000-10000 most common English words) and their root word and root word language. My Google Fu only turns up single words or pages that I can type in a word to get to another page to get the etymology. Wikipedia has some stuff, but it is sorted by language root, which is not what I am looking for. I would like to have a long list of words in a text file so that I can manipulate it programatically. Comma separated or whatever, any format would be great. Here is one use case: Yoke - [list of words that have yoke in the etymological history] (Many, many many English words come from the root work for Yoke.) All answers appreciated!
posted by Monkey0nCrack on May 16, 2013 - 6 answers

You can answer, but you can't reply.

Years ago, my friends and I used to play this game where we'd make sentences with apparent synonyms but negate one of them. For example: "He's honest but he's not truthful." or "He's intelligent but he's not smart." Hearing these sentences would create a sense of difference between the two words that previously wouldn't be visible, or even necessarily exist. We didn't invent this game but I can't remember where we got it. Has anyone heard of it or something like it? Does it have a name? Where does it come from?
posted by Obscure Reference on Apr 1, 2013 - 8 answers

Mythology about books and writing

I'm looking for myths/stories about books and writing. Not - and this is where I'm running into trouble with google - top ten lists about cafe productivity and self-publishing; I mean more like a hero whittling a pen from the boughs of Yggdrasil and then stealing ink from the Kraken, with the goal of writing down the secrets of Enki in order to embarrass him and get him to pay the 5 goats owed. Or whatever. Any location/time is fine! Can be short, can be long.
posted by curious nu on Mar 5, 2013 - 20 answers

Plants can also pray?

Trying to track down a quote (or did I make this up?) [more inside]
posted by Hactar on Dec 11, 2012 - 3 answers

The meltdown of the meltdown

Who coined the phrase "Twitter is in Meltdown" ? [more inside]
posted by sgt.serenity on Nov 18, 2012 - 6 answers

Origin of this gif? [nsfw]

Origin of this gif? [nsfw] [more inside]
posted by Thisisbuffalo on Oct 22, 2012 - 5 answers

Origin/value of Chinese ink drawing

Origin/value of Chinese ink drawing [more inside]
posted by Eiwalker on Jul 11, 2012 - 3 answers

whoa what huh whuh

What are the origins of this creepy psychedelic image? [more inside]
posted by tehloki on May 17, 2012 - 9 answers

Laugh? I thought I'd die!

What is the origin of the phrase, "Laugh? I thought I'd die!"? I'm under the impression that it's older than the Beau Brummels song (1964).
posted by kimota on Jul 8, 2011 - 4 answers

Whence that whistle?

The clichéed two-part catcalling whistle that is performed at the sight of a hottie -- almost exclusively a man whistling at a woman -- that sounds like this. Rising, then falling. Where did that particular "tune" come from? What is the earliest recorded instance of its use? How was it popularized?
posted by Greg Nog on Jun 16, 2011 - 9 answers

Where did "as all get-out" come from?

IdiomFilter: What is the origin of the phrase "as all get-out"? [more inside]
posted by nzero on Apr 19, 2011 - 5 answers

Origin of "Make Me A Chicken Pot Pie"

What is the earliest occurrence of the phrase "make me a chicken pot pie"? [more inside]
posted by crapples on Aug 3, 2010 - 8 answers

Origin of phrase "don't make me cut you"?

Does anybody know where the expression "Don't make me cut you" comes from originally? I have searched and asked others with powerful google-fu to search and we're coming up empty.
posted by Theresa on Jul 20, 2010 - 18 answers

Origin of the Secretly Evil MegaCorp trope?

What was the first evil-with-a-smile corporation in fiction? [more inside]
posted by straight on Jun 22, 2010 - 14 answers

Whence "in the not-too-distant future"?

What is the origin of the phrase "in the not-too-distant future"? [more inside]
posted by unregistered_animagus on Oct 9, 2009 - 10 answers

You belong, you belong, you belong to the Merry Marvel Minutae Society!

Calling all Marvel readers! I've got a question about Daredevil's origin that my own Marvel nerdiness has failed to answer! [more inside]
posted by EatTheWeak on Aug 4, 2009 - 4 answers

Origin of phrase "The righteous man champions the lost cause..."

I'm trying to locate the origin of the phrase "The righteous man champions the lost cause, knowing that all other causes are just merely events." [more inside]
posted by victoriab on Apr 15, 2009 - 2 answers

Origin of nude Jonas Brothers Gone Wild photos? (blurred-out nsfw)

Are these blurred-out shots of the Jonas brothers authentic? If not, that's some darn good photoshopping. [more inside]
posted by Quarter Pincher on Mar 1, 2009 - 7 answers

Where can I buy Ojen liqueur?

My father asked me. Figured I could find it, quick. I've used google et al and can't seem to lock down anything but a likely country of origin, Spain(?)... Still, the question is: Where can Ojen liqueur be purchased in the US? But any details regarding its origin/production (/existence?) would probably be useful.
posted by justrobin on Jan 12, 2009 - 5 answers

Where did the phrase "open nosed" come from?

Where does the phrase "open nosed" come from, and what exactly does it mean? [more inside]
posted by skechada on Dec 16, 2008 - 8 answers

Who is Senator Clay Davis based on?

Who are the actual people Senator Clay Davis (a character in the HBO show The Wire) is based on? [more inside]
posted by 8699oriel on Nov 12, 2008 - 4 answers

What is the origin of the phrase "by the balls"?

What is the origin of the phrase "by the balls" as in: "He's really got you by the balls."? [more inside]
posted by sciurus on Oct 2, 2008 - 14 answers

To go with the blue hair?

Why is blue eyeshadow so common? [more inside]
posted by FuManchu on Jul 17, 2008 - 17 answers

Where does this shirt pattern come from?

What is the origin of these shirts? I have this shirt. i want to know where it comes from. not where it's made, but where in the world does this pattern and style come from? PatternShirt01.jpg PatternShirt02.jpg thanks!
posted by karl88 on Jul 2, 2008 - 4 answers

Finger-lickin' acknowledgment?

Help me find out more about this gesture, where a person licks their finger and either points to the ceiling or draws a line in the air. [more inside]
posted by asras on Jul 1, 2008 - 19 answers

What's the Origin/Artist's Name of "Weird Puppet Being Held While Woman Gets Milk Poured On Her Head"

Could someone name the artist who created http://img149.imageshack.us/img149/4508/strangeza8.jpg, and the other images in the series? I know it was part of an art photography piece, but I can't recall the artist's name, or the link.
posted by Zampa on Apr 21, 2008 - 6 answers

Looking for books that take a philosophical look at the origin of the universe and where mankind is heading (among other things)

Why are we here? What started it all? What is the purpose of life? Where is technology taking us? What will happen to humans eventually? I'm looking for books that discuss the above questions. I don't want the readings to be too dry and textbook like. Thanks a bunch.
posted by iceman7 on Feb 23, 2008 - 23 answers

Earliest use of "Techno"

The origins of "Techno" - the earliest recorded use of the term. [more inside]
posted by urbanwhaleshark on Feb 8, 2008 - 18 answers

Can I show you my exquisite collection of etchings?

What's the origin of/meaning behind the idiom of inviting a lady to inspect one's collection of etchings as a (euphemized/veiled?) sexual proposition? [more inside]
posted by juv3nal on Jan 21, 2008 - 15 answers

Do Fedex Overnight packages have the location of origin postmarked or printed on them in any way?

Do Fedex Overnight packages have the location of origin postmarked or printed on them in any way? [more inside]
posted by dkleinst on Nov 6, 2007 - 16 answers

If you can answer this, then you aren't just another...

Does anyone know the origin of the phrase "not just another pretty face"? [more inside]
posted by girlpublisher on Nov 3, 2007 - 5 answers

Origin of "we are all [blank] now"

What is the origin of the phrase "we are all [blank] now"? The earliest 'famous' usage I'm aware of is Nixon's "we are all Keynesians now," but I don't know if that was really where it started.
posted by Urban Hermit on Jun 29, 2007 - 7 answers

Does the phrase "please, not in the face!" come from anywhere in particular?

Does the phrase "Please, not in the face!" (in reference to a metaphorical imminent beating) have a definitive, particular origin from a famous film or some other piece of pop culture? Or has it just sort of established itself from actual beatings?
posted by so_necessary on Jun 15, 2007 - 16 answers

Swanning around origin

I'm looking for the earliest appearance of the phrase 'swanning around' - To travel around from place to place aimlessly. [more inside]
posted by tellurian on Apr 25, 2007 - 9 answers

Whence the beatings?

What is the origin of the phrase "the beatings will continue until morale improves". Google has failed me on this, only the hive mind will save me.
posted by bumpkin on Mar 30, 2007 - 12 answers

Help me find the origins of this phrase...

What is the origin of the phrase "The future is now"?
posted by sholdens12 on Oct 9, 2006 - 11 answers

Right up my alley

What is the origin of the phrase "right up my (his, her, etc.) alley"??? Is it as simple as referring to being "in my neighborhood of expertise" or is there some sort of bowling reference going on? Google's letting me down here -- but maybe my search capacities are a little rusty.
posted by punkbitch on Jul 18, 2006 - 2 answers

Where does "for those of you following along at home" come from?

What's the origin of the phrase "For those of you [playing/following/scoring] along at home?" [more inside]
posted by AgentRocket on Apr 28, 2006 - 23 answers

Origin of "420"

What is the origin of "420" [more inside]
posted by goalyeehah on Mar 5, 2006 - 9 answers

what the heck is a Mighty Duck?

I've recently become obsessed with the origin of American sports team names. In particular, team names which make a specific reference to something unique in the history or culture of the team location. Does anyone know of an online list of this type of information? And also, anyone care to site any not obvious examples of this from American sports? [more inside]
posted by peppermint22 on Nov 9, 2005 - 52 answers

It's Your Birthday, Have a Party

What are the origins of the chant "it's your birthday, have a party" (repeat ad nauseam)? [more inside]
posted by kmel on Oct 6, 2005 - 25 answers

Where is this robot illustration from?

where is this robot from? It's driving me crazy! Me and a friend saw a guy with a tattoo of this robot on his back at this music festival and we both recognized it. Then I randomly saw that picture on some website. It can't be hitchhikers guide...i think the "don't panic" is just cause it's a home made shirt. Am I wrong? Make me look stupid though, I know you know where this robot came from!
posted by freudianslipper on Jun 3, 2005 - 36 answers

Does a rule exist to determine how a placename is changed when speaking of something native to that place?

How is the term is determined for a native, thing or resident of a place? For example, an American from America or Italian from Italy seems simple enough, but Glaswegian from Glasgow? Shouldn't it be Moswegian and not Muscovite? [more inside]
posted by geckoinpdx on Apr 13, 2005 - 37 answers

And How!!!

What is the Etymological origin of the phrase "And How!" used as an exclamation. [more inside]
posted by Megafly on Mar 23, 2005 - 7 answers

What is the origin of saying shocked twice to indicate emphasis (e.g., "I'm shocked, SHOCKED, that you would insinuate such a thing.")?

What is the origin of saying shocked twice to indicate emphasis (e.g., "I'm shocked, SHOCKED, that you would insinuate such a thing.")? Googling just brings up examples of it in speech and no origin.
posted by trey on Jan 14, 2005 - 29 answers

The name of the White Castle sandwich- slyder or slider?

Can I please get a definitive ruling on White Castle "slider" vs. White Castle "slyder"? Google tells me it's "slider" but I don't think that's right.
posted by blueshammer on Aug 8, 2004 - 11 answers

Find This Quote

What is the origin of the quote: "Life is just a swirling, sucking whirlpool of despair, filled with brief flashes of false hope, in an ever-blackening universe." [more inside] [more inside]
posted by y6y6y6 on Jul 10, 2004 - 19 answers

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