Cock and Balls
when and maybe why as well?
We're pleased to report that eagle-eyed amateur linguistic sleuths have tracked down the earliest sighting yet of Gordon Bennett, whose name has long been held to be a euphemism for "gorblimey", itself from "God blind me". The discovery of Gordon in J Curtis's 1937 book You're in the Racket, Too! ("Gordon Bennett. He wasn't …
I'd heard (I forget where... QI, possibly?) that "dog's bollocks" came from some product or another which came in two styles: Box Deluxe, and Box Standard. The deluxe version was spoonerised into Dox Beluxe, and hence into "dog's bollocks", and the standard became known as "bog standard"...
Now, if I could only back these assertions up with some form of evidence... Ah well, it serves as a useful anecdote on the mutability of language in any case...
Is derived from a racing driver of the thirties, presumably the same one. There was a pub in Tooting called the Gordon Bennett (http://www.beerintheevening.com/pubs/s/42/4261/Gordon_Bennett/Tooting_Broadway) and there is a street in Paris called the Avenue Gordon Bennett next to the Stade Roland Garos. The exclamation came from his driving ability. This may or may not be true.
Pedant alert - "it's the dog's bollocks", or more succinctly "it's the dogs".
Visual similarity has nothing to do with it. It comes from observation that dogs are always licking their bollocks, so the article at issue must be pretty good.
Rare for the OED to be wrong. In this case you should refer to Roger's Profanosaurus.
Is actually an old Victorian engineering term, standing for "British Or German Standard." Seems the old boys had a bit of common sense and wanted to ensure that any component came from a reliable engineering nation and not a cheese eating surrender monkey or some kind of giggolo.
Quote: "... the Black Country,... many round there are to busy sleeping with their cousins..."
That's it, ah. Yo hit the nile on the 'ead (as we say in the west midlands).
A Black Country virgin is any under-age girl who can outrun her dad and her brothers. Her cousins have to wait til later...
Anyone who read Bill Bryson's Made in America (1994) would have known the origin of Gordon Bennett was James GB, the newspaper baron. The exclamation came about because of his party trick of entering swanky restaurants and trying to yank away the tablecloth of the nearest tables, attempting to leave all the crockery, cutlery etc standing. Invariably, he would fail, and he would give the maitre d' a wad of cash to compensate the besplattered and outraged diners. He had a habit of this sort of thing - getting mightily hammered, doing something outrageously annoying to others, and giving them lavish restitution. He was rich, so he could get away with it.
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