[ih] The 20th anniversary of the Internet

Mike Padlipsky the.map at alum.mit.edu
Sat Dec 14 14:34:21 PST 2002

At 10:08 AM 12/14/02, Bob Braden wrote:
>and that was before the work "geek"
>was invented, I believe

from http://www.bartleby.com/61/0/G0070000.html :

Our word geek is now chiefly associated with student and computer slang; 
one probably thinks first of a computer geek. In origin, however, it is one 
of the words American English borrowed from the vocabulary of the circus, 
which was a much more significant source of entertainment in the United 
States in the 19th and early 20th century than it is now. Large numbers of 
traveling circuses left a cultural legacy in various and sometimes 
unexpected ways. For example, Superman and other comic book superheroes owe 
much of their look to circus acrobats, who were similarly costumed in capes 
and tights. The circus sideshow is the source of the word geek, "a 
performer who engaged in bizarre acts, such as biting the head off a live 

[from http://www.metamaze.com/January.html : On Wednesday, January 20, 
1982: Ozzy Osbourne, 34, bit the head off a live bat that was thrown at him 
on stage, during a performance.]

cheers, map

[whose shoulder problems caused him to break down some time ago and create
a 'signature' file to apologize for the lack of his formerly customary
e-volubility -- and who's been employing shiftless typing for a long time
now to spare his wristsnfingers, in case you didn't know ... and who's
further broken down and done http://www.lafn.org/~ba213/mapstuff.html ,
rather grudgingly]

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