beck » back

Chiefly in:   back and call

Classification: English – idiom-related

Spotted in the wild:

  • Now you can rest assured knowing that the most knowledgeable and experienced programmers are at your back end call all day, every day! 24h support from our “graveyard programmers World’s best programmers at your back and call! (link)
  • The privileges and comfort, money can buy, are yours at your back and call. (link)
  • I am told that if you do not have goons at your back and call, you simply cannot operate in the political field. (link)
  • I mean, you can’t honestly expect me to wait at your back and call for you to make yourself available, whenever that might be. (link)

David Storrs in #catalyst chatroom on reported the usage of “at your back end call”. In response to the text David gave (the first portion of the first reference in “spotted in the wild”), HCoyote offered their analysis:
“No, they’re at your back…they’re about to bend you over and fuck you with sandy lube.”
I think another possibility is due to the terms of computer programming. Front end and back end are used to describe different aspects of a program, e.g., Swing (Java GUI) programming. As noticed in the first “spotted in the wild” entry, both “back end call” and “back and call” are used. Since “at his|her|my|their|your|its back end call” only has 25 ghits, all of which appear to be from web hosting companies, I think “back end call” is more of a pun for geeks, me being one.

However, the second spelling “back and call”, seems to be an eggcorn, and still fits the analysis by HCoyote. In gentler words, and in a different sense entirely, it could also come from the meaning of the sentence “I got your back.” The last reference under “spotted in the wild” especially seems to support this sense. Google returned 342 hits for “at his|her|my|their|your|its back and call”, compared to the approximately 82,800 hits for “at his|her|my|their|your|its beck and call”.

See also: beckon call, beckoned call, beacon call.

| link | entered by David Romano, 2005/08/12 |

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