hollandaise » holland day

Chiefly in:   holland day sauce

Classification: English – questionable

Spotted in the wild:

  • Q: What is holland day sauce? A: A rich creamy sauce made of butter, egg yolks, and lemon juice or vinegar is holland day sauce. (link)

Analyzed or reported by:

  • Arnold Zwicky (link)
  • Peter Forster (link)

See also hollandaise >> holiday(s). This is marked as questionable because there’s no obvious semantic motivation for the reinterpretation, only a formal motivation.

| Comments Off link | entered by Arnold Zwicky, 2012/06/13 |

hollandaise » holiday(s)

Chiefly in:   holiday(s) sauce

Classification: English

Spotted in the wild:

  • I found an eggcorn at brunch yesterday! My boyfriend asked me if I liked the holiday sauce on my poached eggs. I asked him to repeat himself so I could be sure of what I’d heard. Once I told him the actual name of the sauce, he said that he’d always wondered what holiday the sauce was originally from. (lolphysics on Eggcorn Forum)
  • I grew up thinking hollandaise sauce was actually called “holidays sauce” because we only ever had it on holidays. (Manolo for the Big Girl site, on Arnold Zwicky's blog)

Analyzed or reported by:

  • Arnold Zwicky (link)
  • various posters on Eggcorn Forum (link)

The eggcorn came up in a Zits cartoon strip, and that led me back to the Eggcorn Forum discussion. Yet another variant, Holland day sauce is posted on separately.

The connection to holiday food is clearly made in several of the sources.

| Comments Off link | entered by Arnold Zwicky, 2012/06/13 |

panty » pansy

Chiefly in:   pansy-waist, pansy-waste

Classification: English

Spotted in the wild:

  • So he’s saying Bush was a pansy waist? (link)
  • [A:] Throughout the anglosphere the word “liberal” has been used scornfully for the past few decades …We all know that it’s used as a proxy term for socialist, panty-waist, etc. in the U.S. [B:] Not to nitpick, but isn’t the term “pansy-waist”? [C:] FWIW, I’ve seen “panty-waist” numerous times. Your comment is the first time I’ve ever seen “pansy-waist” in 40-something years of reading. (link)
  • Ha ha, what a little pansy waste. Little suck up. (link)

Analyzed or reported by:

  • Dave Wilton (On ADS-L 5/26/12)

Panty-waist, originally a North American term for “a garment, usually for children, consisting of panties attached to a waist or bodice” [OED3 March 2005, cites from 1910 on] took on a derogatory sense, “a weak or cowardly person, esp. a young boy; a weakling, a sissy” [cites from 1938 on]. As the original sense became rare, many speakers assimilated the garment term panty to the derogatory term pansy used of male homosexuals.

In a further development, the moderately common spelling confusion waste for waist was incorporated into the expression. Pansy-waist is very frequent, pansy-waste much less so.

| Comments Off link | entered by Arnold Zwicky, 2012/05/26 |

saddle » straddle

Chiefly in:   straddled with

Classification: English

Spotted in the wild:

  • Some of Hungary’s local governments are also straddled with heavy Swiss-franc debts. (Malgorzata Halaba and Marynia Kruk, Dow Jones Newswires, Aug. 12, 2011)
  • I do not blame teachers who are already straddled with a million other problem areas confronting students such as basic writing, discipline, and sustained focus. (Jerry Park, Black, White and Gray, Oct. 14, 2011)
  • The United States is a country with a prosperous past, but also one straddled with an uncommonly uncertain future. (Philip Mooney, Daily Princetonian, Nov. 28, 2011)
  • I hope you’re not one of the millions of college grads forced to move back home with their parents, unable to find a job and straddled with a mountain of debt, because what we’re going to be doing tonight will wake up the whole neighborhood! (Becca O'Neill, Splitsider, Dec. 12, 2011)
  • While art often comes straddled with hefty commission, storage and insurance costs, it can serve as a fun portfolio diversifier, mixing decent returns with aesthetic pleasure. (James Pomfret and Lisa Yuriko Thomas, Reuters, Dec. 19, 2011)
  • “As a result, suppliers have been straddled with higher-than-anticipated inventory levels and high development costs that cannot be offset by next-generation product sales,” Teichmann said in court documents. (Katy Stech, Dow Jones Daily Bankruptcy Review, Jan. 5, 2012)
  • The MTA — straddled with dwindling revenues and high levels of debt — is desperate for the TWU to accept a series of cost-cutting measures. (Jennifer Fermino, New York Post, Jan. 12, 2012)
  • The citizens of this town will once again be straddled with the burden. (Richard Gelber, Hackensack Chronicle letter to the editor, Jan. 12, 2012)
  • But the company was straddled with £1.9bn of gross debt in the 2006 acquisition by Netcare, the South African healthcare group; Apax Partners, the private equity investor; and two property investors. (Robin Wigglesworth and Simon Mundy, Financial Times, Jan. 15, 2012)
  • The reporters on the bus, now straddled with an unexpected new cost, fumed. (Chris Moody, Yahoo! News, The Ticket, Jan. 28, 2012)

Analyzed or reported by:

Update, 1/29/12: The 1/28 item from the Yahoo! News Ticket blog has been corrected and now reads “saddled.”

| Comments Off link | entered by Ben Zimmer, 2012/01/29 |

chalk » chuck

Chiefly in:   chuck (it) up (to)

Classification: English

Spotted in the wild:

  • “When there’s irritability and high maintenance in a child, most people may just chuck it up to normal childhood.” (Tina Benitez, FoxNews.com, Oct. 7, 2007)
  • I think you want to be able to chuck it up to him being young and stupid. I know it would help me think of the world as less of a scary place if that were the case. (alh63, Salon letter to the editor, Mar. 26, 2009)
  • And he collected these winnings in no more than a six month period, which he chucks up to good luck. (Punter's Hero, May 23, 2011)
  • “Overall, we played with some effort we had energy; we played hard it just wasn’t as good of quality as we needed and a lot of it I will chuck up to (lack of) experience.” (Troy Maroney, Brookings (S.D.) Register, Aug. 25, 2011)

Analyzed or reported by:

In the Eggcorn Forum, kem writes:

If our plans misfire, we can chalk it up to experience and go on. “Chalk it up to” means to attribute to, with overtones of bringing the matter to closure. The idiom, which has been with us for several hundred years, may derive from an early alehouse custom of writing customer tabs on a slate with chalk.

Hundreds of web sites think that the idiom is “chuck it up to” (See examples below.). But what is it about “chuck” that licenses its substitution for “chalk” in this idiom? Some possibilities:

  • To “chuck up” can mean to vomit. I don’t think this is in view in “chuck it up to.”
  • An old sense of “chucking” is throwing. We still use it in sport contexts to refer to throwing a ball (“Just chuck the pigskin in his direction: the new wide receiver can vacuum up anything.”).
  • An extension of this sense of “chucking,” sometimes phrased as “chucking up,” gives us the meaning of throwing over, giving up, discarding. (“If the boss says one more word I’m going to chuck this job.”). To “chuck it up to experience,” then, might refer to giving up on (=chucking) an effort by consigning it to (=chucking it into) one’s basket of bad experiences.

There may also be some cross-fertilization from the idiom “chucking in the towel,” a circumlocution for quitting.

See also chalk » chock, chock » chalk(ed).

| Comments Off link | entered by Ben Zimmer, 2011/09/03 |