Friday, June 25, 2010

scuttlebutt

Come on, you knew I'd do something nerdy like this eventually...

Merriam-Webster's Word of the Day: scuttlebutt

Meaning: rumor, gossip

Did you know?

Nowadays, office workers catch up on the latest scuttlebutt around the water cooler, and when they do, they are continuing a long-standing (although not necessarily honorable) tradition. That kind of gossip sharing probably also occurred on the sailing ships of yore. Back in the early 1800s, the cask containing a ship's daily supply of freshwater was called a "scuttlebutt"; that name was later applied to a drinking fountain on a ship or at a naval installation. By the early 20th century, the term for the water source was also applied to the gossip and rumors generated around it, and the latest chatter has been called "scuttlebutt" ever since.

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