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A really cool question, man.
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Richard Chambers
2017-10-01 13:43:38 UTC
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Last Friday I parked my car in Leeds and came back to it an hour later to
find a young (~35 years old) German having trouble parking his large camper
van in the bay behind mine. "Don't worry", I said, "I'm going now". "Thank
you, sir, cool", he said, looking pleased. The use of "sir" and "cool" in
the same sentence struck me as odd, but that is irrelevant to my main
question.

Today, I was watching (and less than 50% understanding*) France24, a
television channel that broadcasts in French and which you can watch in a
similar way to watching BBC i-player. They interviewed a young cyclist and
asked him (I think) what he thought of the new cycle track. "Cool", he
replied, "très cool".

Youthspeak "cool" has evidently got into the French language. Not sure about
German, because the camper van driver was speaking English at the time, but
he certainly knew the word and would not have learnt it at school.

Has "cool" made an appearance in other European languages as well? Has it
reached Australia, NZ, SA, Malaysia, Nigeria and India? At what date
(presumably in America) did this meaning of the word originate?

* But gradually improving.

Richard Chambers Leeds UK.
=========================================
Lewis
2017-10-01 14:46:56 UTC
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Post by Richard Chambers
Has "cool" made an appearance in other European languages as well?
I've heard it from native speakers in Danish, Dutch, German, Spanish, French,
Finnish, Swedish, Estonia, and Italian. Not sure which I heard it when the
person was SPEAKING the language, but pretty certain for Dutch, Danish, French,
Italian, and Estonian.

Oh, and Portugese, but that was Brazilian Portugese.
Post by Richard Chambers
Has it reached Australia, NZ, SA, Malaysia, Nigeria and India? At what date
(presumably in America) did this meaning of the word originate?
Became popular in the 1950s and was pretty much a normal part of the language
by the early 80s. That is, in the 70s I was still 'corrected' for using it as a
slang word, but not in the 80s.
--
By the way, I think you might be the prettiest girl I've ever seen
outside the pages of a really filthy magazine
Bart Dinnissen
2017-10-01 19:37:19 UTC
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On Sun, 1 Oct 2017 14:46:56 -0000 (UTC), in alt.usage.english Lewis
Post by Lewis
Post by Richard Chambers
Has "cool" made an appearance in other European languages as well?
I've heard it from native speakers in Danish, Dutch, German, Spanish, French,
Finnish, Swedish, Estonia, and Italian. Not sure which I heard it when the
person was SPEAKING the language, but pretty certain for Dutch, Danish, French,
Italian, and Estonian.
I agree about the Dutch.
--
Bart Dinnissen
Anders D. Nygaard
2017-10-09 20:59:27 UTC
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Post by Lewis
Post by Richard Chambers
Has "cool" made an appearance in other European languages as well?
I've heard it from native speakers in Danish, Dutch, German, Spanish, French,
Finnish, Swedish, Estonia, and Italian. Not sure which I heard it when the
person was SPEAKING the language, but pretty certain for Dutch, Danish, French,
Italian, and Estonian.
Confirmed for Danish. I'd say it started appearing in the 80's and has
been unremarkable for at least 20 years.

/Anders, Denmark
Stefan Ram
2017-10-01 15:20:47 UTC
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Post by Richard Chambers
Youthspeak "cool" has evidently got into the French language. Not sure about
German, because the camper van driver was speaking English at the time, but
he certainly knew the word and would not have learnt it at school.
The word appeared in a leading German dictionary in 1980. In
my mind I see the speaker to be a child, a Teenager also is
still possible, and then an adult who wants to sound like a
child or Teenager. Possibly the peak of the usage of "cool"
ended after the early 2000s?

The main meaning of the German "cool!" to me is something
like "great!".

Some doubt whether the German "cool" (spelling might also
be: "kewl", "kuhl", "c00l", "kul", "kuul", "k00l", "qwl",
"ql") comes from the English "cool" at all, given that there
also is a Swedisch word "kul" ("funny"). But most assume it
comes from the English "cool".
Anders D. Nygaard
2017-10-09 21:01:59 UTC
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Post by Stefan Ram
Post by Richard Chambers
Youthspeak "cool" has evidently got into the French language. Not sure about
German, because the camper van driver was speaking English at the time, but
he certainly knew the word and would not have learnt it at school.
The word appeared in a leading German dictionary in 1980. In
my mind I see the speaker to be a child, a Teenager also is
still possible, and then an adult who wants to sound like a
child or Teenager. Possibly the peak of the usage of "cool"
ended after the early 2000s?
The main meaning of the German "cool!" to me is something
like "great!".
Some doubt whether the German "cool" (spelling might also
be: "kewl", "kuhl", "c00l", "kul", "kuul", "k00l", "qwl",
"ql") comes from the English "cool" at all, given that there
also is a Swedisch word "kul" ("funny"). But most assume it
comes from the English "cool".
The Swedish word is pronounced differently; with a vowel very similar
to the one known to Germans as "ü".

/Anders, Denmark.
Peter Moylan
2017-10-10 01:16:08 UTC
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Post by Anders D. Nygaard
Post by Stefan Ram
Post by Richard Chambers
Youthspeak "cool" has evidently got into the French language. Not sure about
German, because the camper van driver was speaking English at the time, but
he certainly knew the word and would not have learnt it at school.
The word appeared in a leading German dictionary in 1980. In
my mind I see the speaker to be a child, a Teenager also is
still possible, and then an adult who wants to sound like a
child or Teenager. Possibly the peak of the usage of "cool"
ended after the early 2000s?
The main meaning of the German "cool!" to me is something
like "great!".
Some doubt whether the German "cool" (spelling might also
be: "kewl", "kuhl", "c00l", "kul", "kuul", "k00l", "qwl",
"ql") comes from the English "cool" at all, given that there
also is a Swedisch word "kul" ("funny"). But most assume it
comes from the English "cool".
The Swedish word is pronounced differently; with a vowel very similar
to the one known to Germans as "ü".
I sometimes hear a pronunciation similar to that in English. I've
assumed, admittedly without any evidence, that that was where the
spelling "kewl" came from.
--
Peter Moylan http://www.pmoylan.org
Newcastle, NSW, Australia
Snidely
2017-10-11 09:08:39 UTC
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Just this Monday, Peter Moylan explained that ...
Post by Anders D. Nygaard
Post by Stefan Ram
Post by Richard Chambers
Youthspeak "cool" has evidently got into the French language. Not sure about
German, because the camper van driver was speaking English at the time, but
he certainly knew the word and would not have learnt it at school.
The word appeared in a leading German dictionary in 1980. In
my mind I see the speaker to be a child, a Teenager also is
still possible, and then an adult who wants to sound like a
child or Teenager. Possibly the peak of the usage of "cool"
ended after the early 2000s?
The main meaning of the German "cool!" to me is something
like "great!".
Some doubt whether the German "cool" (spelling might also
be: "kewl", "kuhl", "c00l", "kul", "kuul", "k00l", "qwl",
"ql") comes from the English "cool" at all, given that there
also is a Swedisch word "kul" ("funny"). But most assume it
comes from the English "cool".
The Swedish word is pronounced differently; with a vowel very similar
to the one known to Germans as "ü".
I sometimes hear a pronunciation similar to that in English. I've assumed,
admittedly without any evidence, that that was where the spelling "kewl" came
from.
I would look instead at the origins of leet speak, because "kewl" has
been rife in America for a long time. It wouldn't surprise me to find
that "kewl" influenced leet speak.

/dps
--
But happiness cannot be pursued; it must ensue. One must have a reason
to 'be happy.'"
Viktor Frankl
Pierre Jelenc
2017-10-01 15:40:00 UTC
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Post by Richard Chambers
Youthspeak "cool" has evidently got into the French language.
It's been French since the late 1960 (university students in Paris,
at least).

Pierre
--
Pierre Jelenc
The Gigometer www.gigometer.com
The NYC Beer Guide www.nycbeer.org
Pierre Jelenc
2017-10-01 15:41:00 UTC
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Post by Richard Chambers
Youthspeak "cool" has evidently got into the French language.
It's been French since the late 1960s (university students in Paris,
at least).

Pierre
--
Pierre Jelenc
The Gigometer www.gigometer.com
The NYC Beer Guide www.nycbeer.org
Whiskers
2017-10-01 16:18:29 UTC
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Post by Richard Chambers
Last Friday I parked my car in Leeds and came back to it an hour later
to find a young (~35 years old) German having trouble parking his
large camper van in the bay behind mine. "Don't worry", I said, "I'm
going now". "Thank you, sir, cool", he said, looking pleased. The use
of "sir" and "cool" in the same sentence struck me as odd, but that is
irrelevant to my main question.
Today, I was watching (and less than 50% understanding*) France24, a
television channel that broadcasts in French and which you can watch
in a similar way to watching BBC i-player. They interviewed a young
cyclist and asked him (I think) what he thought of the new cycle
track. "Cool", he replied, "très cool".
Youthspeak "cool" has evidently got into the French language. Not sure
about German, because the camper van driver was speaking English at
the time, but he certainly knew the word and would not have learnt it
at school.
Has "cool" made an appearance in other European languages as well? Has
it reached Australia, NZ, SA, Malaysia, Nigeria and India? At what
date (presumably in America) did this meaning of the word originate?
* But gradually improving.
Richard Chambers Leeds UK.
=========================================
It was one of the 'English' words known to the fishermen and cargo boat
crew from across the North Sea and English Channel who sometimes found
themselves ashore in Devon or Cornwall in the '60s. The Dutch were
especially fond of it, I think.

Anything that makes it a bit easier to park a campervan, is cool, man.
--
-- ^^^^^^^^^^
-- Whiskers
-- ~~~~~~~~~~
Ross
2017-10-01 21:00:25 UTC
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Post by Richard Chambers
Last Friday I parked my car in Leeds and came back to it an hour later to
find a young (~35 years old) German having trouble parking his large camper
van in the bay behind mine. "Don't worry", I said, "I'm going now". "Thank
you, sir, cool", he said, looking pleased. The use of "sir" and "cool" in
the same sentence struck me as odd, but that is irrelevant to my main
question.
Today, I was watching (and less than 50% understanding*) France24, a
television channel that broadcasts in French and which you can watch in a
similar way to watching BBC i-player. They interviewed a young cyclist and
asked him (I think) what he thought of the new cycle track. "Cool", he
replied, "très cool".
Youthspeak "cool" has evidently got into the French language. Not sure about
German, because the camper van driver was speaking English at the time, but
he certainly knew the word and would not have learnt it at school.
Has "cool" made an appearance in other European languages as well? Has it
reached Australia, NZ, SA, Malaysia, Nigeria and India? At what date
(presumably in America) did this meaning of the word originate?
* But gradually improving.
Richard Chambers Leeds UK.
=========================================
Started in African-American slang, especially among jazz musicians,
in the 1940s or earlier. By about 1950 was spreading to teenage
white Americans. See some citations I posted from a newspaper
search in the "explaining 'cool'" thread, 2012.
Stefan Ram
2017-10-01 23:33:33 UTC
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Post by Ross
Started in African-American slang, especially among jazz musicians,
in the 1940s or earlier.
Quotation from the slate magazine [»...« = omissions by me - S.R.]:

»In 1884, a professor ... James A. Harrison published an article
titled "Negro English" ... Harrison cites ... the interjection
"Dat's cool!," ... By the 1920s ... cool is firmly fixed«.
Mack A. Damia
2017-10-01 23:45:36 UTC
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Post by Stefan Ram
Post by Ross
Started in African-American slang, especially among jazz musicians,
in the 1940s or earlier.
»In 1884, a professor ... James A. Harrison published an article
titled "Negro English" ... Harrison cites ... the interjection
"Dat's cool!," ... By the 1920s ... cool is firmly fixed«.
Google doesn't seem to know where "Cool as a moose" came from, but I
am fairly positive that we used it in the 1960s.

Maybe "Bullwinkle J. Moose? Early 1960s?
b***@shaw.ca
2017-10-02 01:27:17 UTC
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Post by Mack A. Damia
Post by Stefan Ram
Post by Ross
Started in African-American slang, especially among jazz musicians,
in the 1940s or earlier.
»In 1884, a professor ... James A. Harrison published an article
titled "Negro English" ... Harrison cites ... the interjection
"Dat's cool!," ... By the 1920s ... cool is firmly fixed«.
Google doesn't seem to know where "Cool as a moose" came from, but I
am fairly positive that we used it in the 1960s.
Maybe "Bullwinkle J. Moose? Early 1960s?
I've never heard it, and I live in -- well, near -- moose country. When I google it, I find there are gift shops in several Canadian resorts (Banff and Whistler) called Cool as a Moose. And there is a guy in Maine who opened a shop called Cool as a Moose in 1986 selling things with the brand name Life Is Good. Not sure if they're related.
Mack A. Damia
2017-10-02 01:40:20 UTC
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Post by b***@shaw.ca
Post by Mack A. Damia
Post by Stefan Ram
Post by Ross
Started in African-American slang, especially among jazz musicians,
in the 1940s or earlier.
»In 1884, a professor ... James A. Harrison published an article
titled "Negro English" ... Harrison cites ... the interjection
"Dat's cool!," ... By the 1920s ... cool is firmly fixed«.
Google doesn't seem to know where "Cool as a moose" came from, but I
am fairly positive that we used it in the 1960s.
Maybe "Bullwinkle J. Moose? Early 1960s?
I've never heard it, and I live in -- well, near -- moose country. When I google it, I find there are gift shops in several Canadian resorts (Banff and Whistler) called Cool as a Moose. And there is a guy in Maine who opened a shop called Cool as a Moose in 1986 selling things with the brand name Life Is Good. Not sure if they're related.
Urban Dictionary and one or two other sites define it; of course, we
know what it means ("really cool"), but there is no mention of the
origin of the saying.

I think I remember my late high school friend saying it a lot. Maybe
it has been forgotten and lost.
Ross
2017-10-02 10:21:47 UTC
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Post by Mack A. Damia
Post by Stefan Ram
Post by Ross
Started in African-American slang, especially among jazz musicians,
in the 1940s or earlier.
»In 1884, a professor ... James A. Harrison published an article
titled "Negro English" ... Harrison cites ... the interjection
"Dat's cool!," ... By the 1920s ... cool is firmly fixed«.
Interesting. The pre-1940s quotes in OED are all problematic:

[1884 J. A. Harrison Negro Eng. in Anglia 7 257 Interjections... Dat's cool!]
1918 Bodleian Q. Rec. 2 152 A case, A lad, A head, A cool kid, all words for expressing admiration for another's cleverness or cunning.
1924 in M. Leadbitter & N. Slaven Blues Records (1968) 155 (title of song) Cool Kind Daddy Blues.

As OED notes,Harrison's "Dat's cool!" is in a long list of un-glossed interjections with a range of different meanings. I can't get the
Bodleian Quarterly Record online, and there's no indication of what sort
of language they are describing, though at least "cool" seems to be used
in a positive sense. The 1924 song is by a rather obscure singer named
Anna Lee Chisholm. There's a YouTube version, but I can't make out enough
of the words to be sure in what sense she's using "cool". It could be
"Exhibiting or demonstrating a lack of warmth of affection; not cordial, unfriendly." (OED 3b).
Post by Mack A. Damia
Google doesn't seem to know where "Cool as a moose" came from, but I
am fairly positive that we used it in the 1960s.
Maybe "Bullwinkle J. Moose? Early 1960s?
I've never heard it. But I wasn't a Bullwinkle follower.
Peter Moylan
2017-10-02 00:55:27 UTC
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Post by Richard Chambers
Last Friday I parked my car in Leeds and came back to it an hour later to
find a young (~35 years old) German having trouble parking his large camper
van in the bay behind mine. "Don't worry", I said, "I'm going now". "Thank
you, sir, cool", he said, looking pleased. The use of "sir" and "cool" in
the same sentence struck me as odd, but that is irrelevant to my main
question.
[...]
Post by Richard Chambers
Has "cool" made an appearance in other European languages as well? Has it
reached Australia, NZ, SA, Malaysia, Nigeria and India? At what date
(presumably in America) did this meaning of the word originate?
Although "cool" has been in AusE since (my best guess) the late 1950s, I
still would find it strange in the context you mention.
--
Peter Moylan http://www.pmoylan.org
Newcastle, NSW, Australia
LFS
2017-10-02 07:34:35 UTC
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Post by Richard Chambers
Last Friday I parked my car in Leeds and came back to it an hour later to
find a young (~35 years old) German having trouble parking his large camper
van in the bay behind mine. "Don't worry", I said, "I'm going now". "Thank
you, sir, cool", he said, looking pleased. The use of "sir" and "cool" in
the same sentence struck me as odd, but that is irrelevant to my main
question.
Today, I was watching (and less than 50% understanding*) France24, a
television channel that broadcasts in French and which you can watch in a
similar way to watching BBC i-player. They interviewed a young cyclist and
asked him (I think) what he thought of the new cycle track. "Cool", he
replied, "très cool".
Youthspeak "cool" has evidently got into the French language. Not sure about
German, because the camper van driver was speaking English at the time, but
he certainly knew the word and would not have learnt it at school.
Has "cool" made an appearance in other European languages as well? Has it
reached Australia, NZ, SA, Malaysia, Nigeria and India? At what date
(presumably in America) did this meaning of the word originate?
Richard Fontana was the aue theorist on 'cool'. I'm sure he will have
answered your third question at some point earlier this century.

As a current data point, I've noticed that Son, who is 41 but still
fairly close to youthspeak, has been using it more lately. But that may
be the influence of his wife-to-be who is from Houston.
--
Laura (emulate St George for email)
Don Phillipson
2017-10-02 13:34:10 UTC
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Post by Richard Chambers
Last Friday I parked my car in Leeds and came back to it an hour later to
find a young (~35 years old) German having trouble parking his large
camper van in the bay behind mine. "Don't worry", I said, "I'm going now".
"Thank you, sir, cool", he said, looking pleased. The use of "sir" and
"cool" in the same sentence struck me as odd . . .
. . . An acute observation.
Post by Richard Chambers
Youthspeak "cool" has evidently got into the French language. . . .
Has "cool" made an appearance in other European languages as well?
A valuable indicator may be the character Will in the BBC-TV comedy
series W1A of 2014. "Cool" is the near-universal response of Will,
a gormless and incompetent trainee "intern" at the BBC's
administrative headquarters.
--
Don Phillipson
Carlsbad Springs
(Ottawa, Canada)
Stefan Ram
2017-10-02 14:07:14 UTC
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Subject: A really cool question, man.
And when would one use »a /real/ cool question«?

For example, Lou Reed sang:

»We're gonna have a /real/ good time together«,

not:

»We're gonna have a /really/ good time together«.

And Frank Zappa characterizes Centerville as

»A /real/ nice place to raise your kids up«

though his Valley Girl also says,

»But I live in like in a /really/ good part of Encino,
so it's okay.«

Similar:

I know that usually one says, "take someone seriously",
but would "take someone serious" also be possible in
the sense of "take someone /to be/ serious" or
"take someone as someone /who is serious/"?
Jerry Friedman
2017-10-02 14:13:35 UTC
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Post by Stefan Ram
Subject: A really cool question, man.
And when would one use »a /real/ cool question«?
Very informally.

https://www.poets.org/poetsorg/poem/we-real-cool

[snip lyrics]

"Really" is also common in informal speech. I don't think I could tell
you who says "really cool" and who says "real cool".
Post by Stefan Ram
I know that usually one says, "take someone seriously",
but would "take someone serious" also be possible in
the sense of "take someone /to be/ serious" or
"take someone as someone /who is serious/"?
I don't think so.
--
Jerry Friedman
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