Saturday, June 07, 2014

Bleacher Seats

It's that time of year, and in my auntly role (and why isn't there a parallel for "avuncular," or is there?), I went to high school graduation this year.

It wasn't too long, which was good, but it's been a long time since I went to graduation and wasn't part of the parade.

This fall, some of these young folks will be students in college.  They looked happy, scared, excited, bored, and so forth, just as you'd expect.

Listening to the three speeches, I once again came to believe that there's little new to be said at graduation speeches.  One of them was amusing, because the student speaker seemed to have a good sense of humor and was willing to be playful.  One of them was a painful analogy that didn't work.  The third was trite and cliché.

While we were waiting for it to start, I read the stuff on the walls and such.  They had banners for other schools in the area, giving their names and mascots.  One of the schools' mascot is the "Ghost."  That seems like an odd mascot to me, and my schools have often tended to have odd mascots.

Then, of course, I got started wondering why the seats are called "bleachers," and why the guy in front of me was sitting so far back, but then I realized that it was just that the seats and legging area aren't long front to back, so anyone who's 5'5" (me) was pretty much trying not to knee the person in front of be kneed by the person in back.

So, ideas about the source of "bleachers"?  (The OED gives a date of first use, but no sense of where it came from.  It seems to be a mostly USian thing.)

1 comment:

  1. Anonymous9:59 PM

    My high school's mascot was the hawk, but each graduating class got to choose their own mascot. My year's was Darth Gator. Other years had Fight Cub, Habeas Porpoise, Bearistotle...