Gut Rumbles

August 22, 2004

trivia question

Where did the term, "CUT ME SOME SLACK" come from?

I'm just curious to see who knows.


You'll have to ask Jim from Smoke on the Water about that one. I'm pretty sure it's an old nautical term dealing with the way the sheets are cut.

Posted by: Mamam on August 22, 2004 02:03 AM

The term "cut me some slack" comes from the Lewis And Clark expedition of 1804.

You see, Merriwether Lewis was born with a speech impediment that caused him to mangle the English language. Because of this his expedition partner, William Clark, was forced to interpret most of Lewis's mutterings for the benefit of fellow expedition members as well as any nearby Indians.

One of the words Lewis had the most trouble with was the word "meat".

One day Lewis became rather agitated while attempting to force a crowbar into the rear end of a recalcitrant coyote that had been caught in one of the many traps that Lewis and Clark would set in hopes of catching a bear.

"Shiver me timbers," Lewis yelled. "I cant be wrestling with this meat all day long...there's snakes to be boned and antelope to flail."

Unfortunately, because of the speech impediment, Clark thought Lewis was saying "Hey man, cut me some slack, ok?"

So Clark did. He cut Lewis some slack after which Lewis was heard to say, in a high pitched voice, "Hey, you cut my balls off you no good bushwhacker."

For some strange reason, no one had any problem understanding what Lewis said. His speech impediment had magically disappeared...along with his balls.

Clark's work with the knife became so famous that, once he returned to Pittsburgh after the expedition was over, he was in great demand as a fixer of speech impediments. Many balls were cut off in the search for improved speech and Clark was able to boast a success rate of just over .0009%.

Thus, not only did Lewis and Clark discover Norway, they also coined the term "cut me some slack" which soon became synonomous with "what the hell are you doing, messing with my balls you sick, demented bastard!"

Posted by: mr. helpful on August 22, 2004 02:15 AM

And why was he deboning snakes? He was hoping they would evolve into boneless chicken?

Posted by: Stoney on August 22, 2004 02:31 AM

Wingtip wearing, finger snapping Jesus on a Skateboard!

Posted by: wes jackson on August 22, 2004 02:55 AM

No, Stoney....he didnt want to debone the snake, he wanted to bone it.

According to my Webster's Dictionary (third edition, abridged), boning means to "put the bone in".

Thus it can be safely assumed that Lewis, once done with the coyote, wished to put the bone in the snake. It can also be safely assumed that Lewis was a raving lunatic who gave new meaning to the word "backwater".

Posted by: mr. helpful on August 22, 2004 03:10 AM

I suspect it has a common heritage with "on a short leash."

Posted by: Eric Pobirs on August 22, 2004 07:59 AM

Probably has a maritime connection having to do
with ropes/rigging/etc.. Literally means to cut some rope off the slack end.

Posted by: Ian MacLure on August 22, 2004 09:12 AM

Always true to form, Mr.Helpful has the best answer I've read so far. It just ain't the right one.

Someone is close by calling it a nautical term.

Posted by: Acidman on August 22, 2004 09:34 AM

Ah! I see! Well, that sheds a whole new light on the subject, then. Ever so helpful, Mr Helpful.

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