Friday, November 28, 2008
Tuesday, November 25, 2008
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
Olly olly oxen free
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
For the 1978 black comedy film, see Olly Olly Oxen Free (film).
The exact origin of the phrase is unknown, but etymologists suspect it is a childish corruption of the German "Alle, alle auch sind frei!", (literally, "Everyone, everyone also is free!"), which is purported to have been a cruel joke often played upon Holocaust victims by their jailers. At any particular time, a prisoner might be released, immediately upon which the phrase would be shouted. Any other prisoners who also left would be killed further down the road by Nazi soldiers.
Gordon Leeman. WWII: The True Story. 1987.
William Cartel. History of Germany. Revised and Expanded. 1815-1990.
The etymology above is highly suspect, though ingenious, as the phrase was almost certainly in use long before WWII. The phrase referred to is also not proper German. That would be "Alle, alle sind auch frei!" or better "Alle anderen sind auch frei!" (Everyone else is also free).
Another theory is that it is a corruption of the phrase, "calling all the outs in free".
The phrase can also be used to coordinate hidden players in the game "kick the can", where a group of children hide within a given radius and a "seeker" is left to guard a can filled with rocks. The seeker has to try to find the "hiders" without allowing them to sneak in and kick the can. In many areas the phrase used is "Ally Ally In Come Free" which is a way to tell all hidden that is time to start the game of trying to get in to the can without being caught. Another phrase that has a similar meaning and possibly similar root is "come out, come out, wherever you are."
Saturday, November 8, 2008
Well, this is a lot for me. I am done.