Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Journal Day 4

Snow Day! I wish it had been real snow instead of this icy stuff. I spent most of the day trying to find the source of Grampy's poetry line about the dingbat. I did find some definitions from a dictionary of Railroad slang. (Grampy moved to Brownville Jct from NB with the Canadian Pacific RR around 1915 just after Dad was born) Dad thought the poem might have been "Hoghead's Last Request" which was one that Gramp used to recite. I found it and it wasn't the right one. I spent the rest of the day looking for the words to "Gila Monster Route". I found some references to it, and they suggested key words, hobo, travel, prison, and drink, which gives you some idea of the lullabies Grampy used to sing to us. One of my favorites was "Halleluja I'm a Bum". I guess he couldn't really sing, but I didn't know that, nor did it matter. It's incredible the amount of useless but interesting information available on the web...

Dingbat (1) - An old hobo who mooches off of other hoboes.Ding bat (2) - A person who has no sense, often a railroad worker.Ding bat (3) - A down-and-out hobo.


Blogger johngoldfine said...

Oooh, there's a great isearch topic in here. Maybe you'd like to take ENG 101? Interesting where that word wound up--from hobo slang to its last incarnation as Archie Bunker's slam at Edith.

And "which gives you some idea of the lullabies Grampy used to sing to us."--is dry and sly, which I love.

7:30 AM  

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