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I went with my daughter to look at the Hill ... I think they had some kind of dress code, too.

Just been reading a book set in Pennsylvania and got a shock when one of the characters said she needed to pick up some "potted mums" (I worked out it was some kind of plant).

Is potted slang for "drunk" in underpondia?

Aaron Davies
Opinions expressed are solely those of a random number generator. "I don't know if it's real or not but it is a myth." -Jami JoAnne of alt.folklore.urban, showing her grasp on reality.
I've seen it used when people wore ordinary shorts as well as "undershorts". How else would you distinguish?

In AmE, IME, "shorts" by default refers to the outer garment, and "boxer shorts" or "boxers" is the most likely term for the undergarment. Granted, with actual boxers like Sugar Shay (= ?E "Ron"), there may be a problem.

As to whether they are outer garment or undergament?
Per Erik Rønne
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Sometimes you will see a reference to "Fruit of the ... people don't realize it's a brand rather than a style.

I've also heard people use "BVDs" generically or semi-generically (UONWGAWUD).

Oy, another rf acronym I can't decipher. Anyway, I don't think I've ever heard "BVDs" outside of that one Tom Lehrer song. In fact, IIRC, I had to ask my mom what it meant. I was rather surprised, about ten years later, when I first spotted a package of BVD brand underwear in a department store, as I somehow hadn't grasped that it was a brand name.
Aaron Davies
Opinions expressed are solely those of a random number generator. "I don't know if it's real or not but it is a myth." -Jami JoAnne of alt.folklore.urban, showing her grasp on reality.
...
}> I've also heard people use "BVDs" generically or semi-generically }> (UONWGAWUD).
}
} Oy, another rf acronym I can't decipher.
...
"Uh oh, now we've gone and wook up Davies."

R. J. Valentine
(sic)
"He must be European. Shorts, black socks, and sandals."

I don't quite comprehend that statement. BTW, Scandinavians tend to use tennis socks all throughout the year and for all occasions. You'll usually purchase "12 socks dkr 100", ¤13. They reduce the sock-pairing problem!

Per Erik Rønne
Students: Are you brave enough to let our tutors analyse your pronunciation?
"He must be European. Shorts, black socks, and sandals."

I don't quite comprehend that statement. BTW, Scandinavians tend to use tennis socks all through the year and for all occasions. You'll usually purchase "12 socks dkr 100", ¤13. They reduce the sock-pairing problem!

Per Erik Rønne
}
}> "He must be European. Shorts, black socks, and }> sandals."
}
} I don't quite comprehend that statement. BTW, Scandinavians tend to use } tennis socks all throughout the year and for all occasions. You'll } usually purchase "12 socks dkr 100", ¤13. They reduce the sock-pairing } problem!
Coop is pulling a cruel and uncalled-for (though well-executed) Areff.

Have I mentioned the time my Uncle Fred got a deal on singleton sock samples at the customs-house auction in New York? A whole mess of them in all sorts of different patterns. He dropped them off at the laundromat he frequented to get them washed. The attendant asked if he wanted them matched and rolled for an extra fifty cents. (Here imagine Benny Hill turning and looking at the camera.) He was like sure, go ahead. When he got back, the attendant was all upset. What's wrong, says Uncle Fred. There are three socks I couldn't find the mates for, the guy moans. Don't worry about it, says Uncle Fred, paying up and walking out with a year's supply of clean, plausibly matched socks.

R. J. Valentine
You probably mean that you don't think that marriage is ... (Such a thing would be uncontroversially unconstitutional in the US.)

Really? I'm not sure it would be. There have been a few towns where the mayor, or county clerk, or ... in its laws. Or by "ban", do you mean prohibit the (usually religious) ceremony part, rather than the civil part?

A state, county, or city would have to recognize marriages made in other states because of the "Full Faith and Credit Clause" of the US Constitution. An exception can be made based upon "public policy," which at one time allowed racist state laws against recognizing an interracial marriage made in another state and now (I expect) allows homophobic state laws against gay marriages made in another state, but I expect a state, county, or city would have an uphill battle defending the non-recognition of marriages made in other states (by, for example, not allowing a husband to visit his wife if she is a patient in a hospital).
If the leaders of a state were to go crazy and outlaw marriage if its government were taken over by a group of crackpots(1) I expect that such laws would be overturned in court using arguments very similar to those which have been successful in legalizing gay marriage or civil unions where they have been legalized in the US.
Note:
(1) Something like that happened before, with the Ku Klux Klan. As it says in *The Columbia Encyclopedia,* 6th ed., at
http://www.bartleby.com/65/ku/KuKluxKl.html
"Texas, Oklahoma, Indiana, Oregon, and Maine were particularly under its influence."

Raymond S. Wise
Minneapolis, Minnesota USA
E-mail: mplsray @ yahoo . com
Students: We have free audio pronunciation exercises.
I wonder how the US, with one of the most decentralized school systems in the world, ended up with one of the most uniform vocabularies for describing it?

What a strange remark. In my mind the US is notable for its uniformity above all else. Of course, if you live there, the differences between states and regions are more noticeable than the similarities. But if you don't live there, it's the other way round, more so than in any other large country I can think of.
And I don't think this uniformity is principally due to centralised control or administration. It's simply that American people seem to like things that way.

Mike Barnes
Cheshire, England
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