Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Sports slang

With -4º F this morning in Madison, lots of folks are happily thinking about the start of spring training, at least those who find an implicit promise of the coming of spring in there. (Winter does strange things to the mind, at times.)

Some other sports are already rolling, literally. Sunday's Daytona 500 saw the "Car of Tomorrow" become the "Car of Today", still known as the C.O.T. The use of regional English in NASCAR broadcasts has serious potential as a dissertation topic, but even minor naming patterns are remarkable: The announcers call each other by last names often, for example, like "Hammond, what do you have to say from the pits?", where first names are the only way to go for most TV. You still get classic southern nicknames showing up, such as Dale Earnhardt, Jr. being referred to as June Bug (pretty common nickname for young men, I gather).

But just after I was pondering this matter while watching the prologue to the Tour of California (sadly sponsored by biotech firm Amgen) the other night, a regular reader alerted me to this (see also here, just scroll down.) It's Rory Sutherland's race diary. I really like that riders in the stage races do on-line diaries — gives you a feel for how they see things. But he's from Oz and wants great Aussie quotes and slang.

Oh yeah, don't forget to vote today, Wisconsinites, whether you consider yourself a Sconnie, a Cheesehead, or somebody from Wisco.

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