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#146187 - 08/09/05 04:19 PM Left in the lurch  
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Sparteye Offline
Pooh-Bah
Sparteye  Offline
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He left me in the lurch. Have you ever wondered what or where this lurch was? Me too. So I finally looked it up in my trusty ol' Webster's Unabridged. Of the several "lurch" entries (none of which involve the Addams' family butler), this phrase draws its meaning from

lurch ... [MF lourche, n., a game & lourche, adj. deceived, prob. of Gmc origin; akin to MHG lerz, lurz left, located on the left side ... 1 an act or instance of cheating; ... 2 an act or instance of discomfiture ...

And, as Dr Bill already noted (http://wordsmith.org/board/showflat.pl?Cat=&Board=words&Number=76153):

3a: a decisive defeat in which a player wins a game by more than twice his opponent's score; specif a defeat in which a player wins a cribbage game before his opponent has progressed halfway toward the goal

I have played cribbage for many years, and I've never heard "lurch" used in this context. 'Round these parts, if you beat the opposition soundly, you skunk 'em; if you beat them by double the score, you double skunk 'em.


#146188 - 08/09/05 05:47 PM Re: Left in the lurch  
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tsuwm Offline
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this too shall pass
I'm with you on this one, Sparteye -- been playing cribbage for 50 years or more and never heard this. but when I google cribbage/lurch/skunk I get lots of hits at cribbage sites which claim lurch is another word for skunk.

I guess we got left in the ~ somewheres.


#146189 - 08/09/05 07:01 PM Re: Left in the lurch  
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Zed Offline
Pooh-Bah
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British Columbia, Canada
I think I've read "He was lurched." meaning tricked/beaten by an opponent or enemy. I think I associated it with lurching to a halt but I didn't pay much attention at the time. Cribage was not involved.
Crib is 121 to win and 90 is the skunk line. Would lurched be < 60?




#146190 - 08/09/05 07:20 PM Re: Left in the lurch  
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tsuwm Offline
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this too shall pass
according to these sites, lurched is also less than 91; I didn't notice, but I suppose less than 61 would be double-lurched?

edit - check out the entry for 'lurch' at this cribbage glossary: http://www.geocities.com/TimesSquare/Alley/1542/

#146191 - 08/10/05 12:58 AM Re: Left in the lurch  
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Sparteye Offline
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Sparteye  Offline
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How funny that this use of lurch is considered so low. I'm glad to know that I'm not a crib-lebe.


#146192 - 08/10/05 06:21 PM Re: Left in the lurch  
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Zed Offline
Pooh-Bah
Zed  Offline
Pooh-Bah

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British Columbia, Canada
OOps, forgot to mention that I saw it either in an historical novel or a very old one, likely 1800's.


#146193 - 08/25/05 06:38 AM That Lowdown skunk!  
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consuelo Offline
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Seems to me it would have to be really low to be lower than a skunk, unless it's Pepe LePew??



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