It's a strange feeling to find that an ordinary looking word has long been used in a strange sense that you've never heard of. I recently came across the word "fixture" meaning a scheduled date for an event. The New Shorter Oxford dates that sense early 19th century.
Where I found it was in a list of football-news headlines, where it said something like "Fixtures 2005-2006". It turned out to be a list of all games to be played in the Premiership and their dates during the coming season, with links to lists of "fixtures" in other leagues. ( http://tinyurl.com/chpn7 .)
I first thought it must be a British usage, but then I found it in Merriam-Webster's Collegiate Dictionary with no mention of its being British.
Is it really in use in American English to a significant degree?
I can think of various uses of "fixture", like "He has visited so often that he has become a fixture here", or "The office has desks, filing cabinets, and other common fixtures", but I can't imagine how any of the ordinary meanings of "fixture" could have developed into meaning the date of an event.
Comments?
It's a strange feeling to find that an ordinary looking word has long been used in a strange sense that ... imagine how any of the ordinary meanings of "fixture" could have developed into meaning the date of an event. Comments?

I can speculate from a British point of view.
In a sporting context a team forming part of a league will have a number of events in its season's schedule.
Some of these dates will be determined by the organisers of the league, not independently by teams. Such a date is "fixed" in the schedule in the sense that it can not changed by the participants in the event. Other events can be arranged on a bilateral (or whatever) basis.

Peter Duncanson
UK (posting from a.u.e)