‘Mondayitis’: meaning and early occurrences

reluctance to attend school or work, or a reduction in working efficiency, experienced on a Monday morning—UK and USA, 1908; Australia, 1910—the suffix ‘-itis’ is applied to a state of mind or tendency fancifully regarded as a disease

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‘aerial ping-pong’: meaning and origin

derisive appellation given to Australian Rules (football), because the ball is often kicked high into the air, requiring players to leap and catch it—Australia, 1945—slang of the Australian armed forces during World War II

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‘sticker-licker’: meaning and origin

state of South Australia, 1952—a traffic warden—from the fact that South Australian traffic wardens licked the adhesive parking tickets in order to stick them to the windscreens—hence also the verb ‘sticker-lick’

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‘Queen Anne’s fan’: meaning and early occurrences

UK, 1883—a gesture of derision made by putting one’s thumb to one’s nose and outspreading the fingers like a fan; can be intensified by joining the tip of the little finger to the thumb of the other hand, whose fingers are also outspread fanwise—the motivation for the choice of ‘Queen Anne’ is unknown

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‘Indian burn’: meaning and origin

USA, 1937, as a wrestling term—an act of placing both hands on a person’s wrist or arm and then twisting it to produce a burning sensation—alludes to the fiendish methods of torture attributed to the ‘(Red) Indians’

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‘Chinese burn’: meaning and origin

UK, 1956, children’s slang—an act of placing both hands on a person’s wrist or arm and then twisting it to produce a burning sensation—alludes to the fiendish methods of torture attributed to the Chinese

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‘lager lout’: meaning and origin

UK, 1987—a young man who behaves in an unpleasant or aggressive manner as a result of drinking (typically lager) excessively—lager, a pale beer, is favoured by the young as opposed to the dark, traditional bitter English beer

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