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#38347 - 08/12/01 03:37 AM
Max Quordlepleen Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/12/00
Posts: 3409

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#38348 - 08/12/01 04:28 AM Re: You people are useless! I demand a refund!
Marianna Offline
addict

Registered: 01/09/01
Posts: 427
Loc: Spain
Easy, Tiger!

Ok, ok... No, Max, elephants DO NOT have hooves...




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#38349 - 08/12/01 04:35 AM
Max Quordlepleen Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/12/00
Posts: 3409

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#38350 - 08/12/01 09:12 AM Re: You people are useless! I demand a refund!
wow Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 11/25/00
Posts: 3439
Loc: New England, USA
Mea Nui (aka Max) dear Heart ... you came to AWAD before me, and many others ... unburden your heart ... tell us how we can help you ... do not leave us floundering in the darkness of your displeasure and disdain.




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#38351 - 08/12/01 11:17 AM Re: You people are useless! I demand a refund!
Keiva Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/04/01
Posts: 2605
I have just been reminded that it was a year ago that I signed up here.
A year to the day. Happy Anniversary!



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#38352 - 08/12/01 11:31 AM Re: I demand a refund!
Keiva Offline
Carpal Tunnel

Registered: 08/04/01
Posts: 2605
MaxQ, when a newbie: I am feeling rather like an oafish gatecrasher, ... asking questions that were answered months ago. MaxQ today: I demand a refund! it was a year ago that I signed up here, and I STILL haven't received a definitive answer to the question that I asked way back then.

If we let our genial genie out of the bottle, it would truly be a fiasco.


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#38353 - 08/12/01 11:55 AM Re: You people are useless! I demand a refund!
Sparteye Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 01/05/01
Posts: 1773
Here is Max's first post, from August 12, 2000, @ 5:05:32:

Does anybody know fiasco came to have its common meaning in English? How does a word for a type of bottle or even "fare fiasco," "to make a bottle," come to mean an abject failure? TIA

http://wordsmith.org/board/showthreaded.pl?Cat=&Board=words&Number=3476

In response, tsuwm posted a link to a couple of possible answers, but noted that the answer was not clear:

http://latin.about.com/library/wordstories/blfiasco.htm

and William said:

i've heard somewhere that it came from problems in the italian wine industry. so many more bottles of certain wines were sold than made (and i believe still are sometimes) that a fiasco came to mean a situation where rules had no effect.

My own sources are also conflicting:

from Etymological Dictionary of the English Language:

FIASCO, a failure, break-down in a performance (Ital - Late L). From the Ital. phrase far fiasco, to make a bottle; also, to fail, to break down (reason for this unknown; perhaps it means that the empty bottle fails to please). Torriano, ed 1688, has: fiaschi, bottles, flaggons; also, an interjection of admiration, as papae in Latin.

Origins A Short Etymological Dictionary of Modern English says:

fiasco, a flask or bottle (esp of wine), hence -- ?from "dead marines" and smashed bottles -- a crash, esp a resounding or ludicrous failure: via F, from It, fiasco, bottle, crash of Gmc origin. The "failure" sense may have an independent origin: it comes, in F, from faire fiasco, from It far fiasco, to make a failure, and this It fiasco is not certainly the "bottle" fiasco.

Dictionary of Word Origins says:

The making of a fine Venetian glass bottle is a difficult process -- for it must be perfect. If, in blowing, the slightest flaw is detected the glassblower turns the bottle into a common flask -- called in Italian, fiasco.

And, Why You Say It says:

Long ago, Venice became a great center of the glass trade. Her craftsmen developed the now-standard goblet made up of bowl, stem, and foot. They also imitated semiprecious stones in the color and texture of fine ware. Many pieces were so prized that royal inventories listed them along with gold and silver vessels.

In addition to costly ware, Italian artisans produced great quantities of the common flask -- which in some dialects was know as a fiasco.

Flaws frequently developed in the process of turning out fine pieces. Glass was too expensive to throw away; even damaged, a hunk of it could be reheated and turned into a fiasco or two. So many inexpensive flasks were the result of bungling that the glass blower's term came to indicate any type of failure.

At least, that is maybe the most believable of half a dozen theories offered to account for the rise of a distinctive and elusive word.

=====

So, dear Max, the origin of fiasco might stay lost, along with the meaning of the giant heads on Easter Island and the point of crop circles.

But happy anniversary anyway. Those who have followed you here remain in awe.



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#38354 - 08/12/01 12:19 PM Re: You people are useless! I demand a refund!
inselpeter Offline
Pooh-Bah

Registered: 03/14/01
Posts: 2379
Loc: New York City
In a fable, a judge rules a poor student must pay the wealthy merchant accusing him of theft with the sound of coins for the smell of cooking fish. Pray, dearest Max, what funds would you be re'd and how might we pay you?

***

summer sea shore tempts to say, the fiasco was the letter in it.


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#38355 - 08/12/01 02:30 PM Re: You people are useless! I demand a refund!
wordcrazy Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 01/26/01
Posts: 275
Sparteye, if you are making mega-bucks for the use of your legal mind, I do declare you deserve it and more! Great detective work!


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#38356 - 08/12/01 02:39 PM Re: You people are useless! I demand a refund!
wordcrazy Offline
enthusiast

Registered: 01/26/01
Posts: 275
August 12 will be a red letter day from now on, It is nancyk's birthday and MaxQ's sign-up anniversary on the board.

A decade from now we will be telling tales around a campfire at our 10th Wordapalloza and somebody will start with "remember that fateful day, August 12, 2001 when MaxQ threw a doozy of a tantrum? It sent Sparteye to hurriedly don her detective gears, then pore through skeins after skeins of "threads" until she came up with the cause of the tantrum. She then scurries to her piles of word books to find the answer to this confounded query that is so upsetting our MazQ and then she rides her motorized scooter back to her computer all the while praying that MaxQ doesn't hurt himself throwing this mega-tantrum around, while she scrambles to scan all the anwers that will satisfy the great tantrumming MaxQ ...It was the mother of all FIASCOS, I tell you!

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