Eighinger: Was someone tryin’ to find the studmuffin? Duh!

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Steve Eighinger...Studmuffin

We all love to use a good insult, or drop an occasional bad word.

But what is the background of some of those little nasties? Hopefully, the ensuing information will help, so the next time you call someone one of the following you’ll have a little better understanding.

“Like fashion, slang changes with the times,” writes Brie Dyas of townandcountrymag.com. “A word that seems current one year can feel wildly dated as time goes on. “Some of those words and terms, however, are like a fine wine. They become better — and more penetrating — as they age.

Kali Coleman of yahoo.com agrees. “Every year, dictionary editors comb through publications to new find new vocabulary words that have become minted in the American lexicon. Those terms that are most widely used and have a clear definition then get added to the dictionary.

“Here are some classic cases of words or phrases becoming part of our language, and the year they were generally accepted by those who patrol our dictionaries:

Duh (1943): Though associated by many as a 1990s remark to express actual of feigned ignorance of stupidity, “duh” had been widely used an off-handed remark as far back as the 1940s. It can even be found in some of those old Merrie Melodies cartoons.

Nerd (1951): The term can be found in Newsweek magazine as far back as 70 years ago, and it meant the same thing it does today.

Cool (1955): One of the earliest references of “cool” came in a 1950s roundup of slang terms in Mad magazine. Ironically, that was the same year that James Dean, the all-time king of cool, died in a car crash.

Doofus (1959): Designed to describe a foolish person, “doofus” first emerged more than 60 years ago, but it not take hold until the 1980s.

F-bomb (1988): This is the more acceptable way of saying one of the seven words on comedian George Carlin’s list of “Words You Can’t Say.” It has been in most leading dictionaries now for 33 years.

As if (1995): Have you seen “Clueless?” That was the movie that introduced the world to “as if.” Thank you, Cher Horowitz.

How you doin’? (1998): This was one of several catch phrases we have “Friends” to thank for … this was Joey Tribbani’s go-to-line with the young ladies.

Klutz (1959): The term “klutz” actually has Yiddish origins and was added to the dictionary as “simple, concise way to describe someone who is overly clumsy.”

Pig-out (1978): One of its first uses is credited to The Washington Post in ’78. “In food, a moderate diet is always right, yet once in a great while a pig-out is desirable.” Not sure who wrote that story, but I’m a fan.

Cred (1981): As in street “cred,” the ability to gain acceptance as a member of any particular group or class. I have cred in most local restaurants.

Benjamins (1984): This relatively new way to refer to $100 bills came from Notorious B.I.G.’s “One More Chance.”

Studmuffin (1986): Granted, it could be the title of my autobiography, but this became an acceptable term for a handsome man during that wonderful decade of the 1980s.

Found on Facebook

A semi-senior moment between a husband and wife: Wife: “Honey, you really should slow down at this curve.”

Husband: “I’m speeding because I have to get there before I forget where I’m going.” (Been there, done that.)

“Imagine, if you will, a world in which YouTube, Twitter and Facebook merge to become known as YouTwitFace.” (In this day and age, that’s a definite possibility.)

“My trust issues started when my mom said, “Come here, I’m not gonna hit ya.” (I remember that line!)

“The innovation of the shovel was ground-breaking, though the invention of the broom was the one that swept the nation.”  (This is a personal favorite of Quincyan Kevin Reed.)

“A slice of apple pie in Jamaica is $2. It is $2.50 in the Bahamas. These are the pie rates of the Caribbean.” (If you are questioning the humor here — or lack thereof — just read it again. Slowly.”

Overrated, underrated

 Overrated: Ozzy Osbourne. Oz should have ridden that Crazy Train into anonymity a long, long time ago.

Underrated: Ozzie Albies, Atlanta Braves infielder. A superstar of the not too distant future, plus a personality to match.

Overrated: The traditional monster films. You know, the ones featuring the likes of Godzilla, King Kong, etc. Most of the time they are way too predictable and downright cheesy.

Underrated: As readers of this space already know, I love zombies — or at least TV shows and movies about them. One of the most overlooked is “Zombieland,” starring Woody Harrelson. It is one wonderfully wicked and hilarious film. Oh, and it also features plenty of gore, too.

Happy birthday

Barry Gibb: The last surviving member of the Bee Gees turns 78 on Wednesday.

Keanu Reeves: The action movie stars will be 57 on Thursday. I wonder if he was ever in the running to be the next James Bond?

Keanu Reeves: Not James Bond.

Dweezil Zappa: The son of the late rock star Frank Zappa will be 52 come Sunday.

And in the gone, but not forgotten category of early September birth dates:

Jesse James: If the famous outlaw were still alive, he’d be turning 174 on Sunday.

Buddy Holly: The singer, born on Sept. 7, was just 22 when he died in a plane crash in 1959.

Harland Sanders: The man who made KFC chicken a household thing, Col. Sanders, was born on Sept. 9 and was 90 when he passed away in 1990.

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