Discussion:
"Spuggies"
(too old to reply)
a***@ashbournecollege.co.uk
2020-01-10 12:31:37 UTC
Permalink
I read the following phrase in "The ghost road", a novel by British
"The spuggies aren't everybody's cup of tea."
As context shows, the character is talking about a kind of spiritistic
session she is going to. But what exactly does "spuggies" mean?
I haven't found this word in any dictionary and would therefore be
glad if anyone of you could tell me its exact meaning.
Thanks,
M. Kranz
I wonder the exact same question!!!!!!!
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Peter Moylan
2020-01-10 13:25:58 UTC
Permalink
Post by a***@ashbournecollege.co.uk
I read the following phrase in "The ghost road", a novel by
British authoress Pat Barker: "The spuggies aren't everybody's cup
of tea." As context shows, the character is talking about a kind of
spiritistic session she is going to. But what exactly does
"spuggies" mean? I haven't found this word in any dictionary and
would therefore be glad if anyone of you could tell me its exact
meaning. Thanks, M. Kranz
I wonder the exact same question!!!!!!!
Hasn't this question been answered in the last 22 years? I am reluctant
to go to Google Gropes to see the entire thread.
--
Peter Moylan http://www.pmoylan.org
Newcastle, NSW, Australia
Peter Duncanson [BrE]
2020-01-10 15:16:58 UTC
Permalink
On Sat, 11 Jan 2020 00:25:58 +1100, Peter Moylan
Post by Peter Moylan
Post by a***@ashbournecollege.co.uk
I read the following phrase in "The ghost road", a novel by
British authoress Pat Barker: "The spuggies aren't everybody's cup
of tea." As context shows, the character is talking about a kind of
spiritistic session she is going to. But what exactly does
"spuggies" mean? I haven't found this word in any dictionary and
would therefore be glad if anyone of you could tell me its exact
meaning. Thanks, M. Kranz
I wonder the exact same question!!!!!!!
Hasn't this question been answered in the last 22 years? I am reluctant
to go to Google Gropes to see the entire thread.
The OED has "spuggy/spuggies":

Scottish and English regional (chiefly north-eastern).

The house sparrow.

That is unlikely to be the meaning of "spuggy" in the novel.

It is possible the "Sp" comes from "Spiritualist" and "G" comes from
something starting with that letter. "Spuggy" seems to be a nickname. I
am not familiar with spiritualist organisations. One such appears to be
"Spiritualist Association of Great Britain". Its official initialism is
SAGB.

The nickname "Spuggy" might have been created from that name using "Sp"
and "g" with the vowel "u" inserted.

On the other hand the "g" way have come from "Group" in the name of the
organisation nicknamed.

Tangentially: "Spuggy" might be a nickname for regular patrons of a
particular bar and restaurant in Scotland.

The Spiritualist, Glasgow:
https://www.thespiritualistglasgow.com
--
Peter Duncanson, UK
(in alt.usage.english)
Peter T. Daniels
2020-01-10 17:14:04 UTC
Permalink
Post by Peter Moylan
Post by a***@ashbournecollege.co.uk
I read the following phrase in "The ghost road", a novel by
British authoress Pat Barker: "The spuggies aren't everybody's cup
of tea." As context shows, the character is talking about a kind of
spiritistic session she is going to. But what exactly does
"spuggies" mean? I haven't found this word in any dictionary and
would therefore be glad if anyone of you could tell me its exact
meaning. Thanks, M. Kranz
I wonder the exact same question!!!!!!!
Hasn't this question been answered in the last 22 years? I am reluctant
to go to Google Gropes to see the entire thread.
All 11 prior messages?
Jerry Friedman
2020-01-10 17:34:55 UTC
Permalink
Post by Peter Moylan
Post by a***@ashbournecollege.co.uk
I read the following phrase in "The ghost road", a novel by
British authoress Pat Barker: "The spuggies aren't everybody's cup
of tea." As context shows, the character is talking about a kind of
spiritistic session she is going to. But what exactly does
"spuggies" mean? I haven't found this word in any dictionary and
would therefore be glad if anyone of you could tell me its exact
meaning. Thanks, M. Kranz
I wonder the exact same question!!!!!!!
Hasn't this question been answered in the last 22 years? I am reluctant
to go to Google Gropes to see the entire thread.
Several people mentioned sparrows. I like Katherine Harper's suggestion
that it was the character's whimsical variant of "spooks".

If anyone's interested in the passage in the book,

https://books.google.com/books?id=aazHAAAAQBAJ&pg=PT46
--
Jerry Friedman
CDB
2020-01-10 20:39:57 UTC
Permalink
Post by Jerry Friedman
Post by Peter Moylan
Post by a***@ashbournecollege.co.uk
I read the following phrase in "The ghost road", a novel by
British authoress Pat Barker: "The spuggies aren't everybody's
cup of tea." As context shows, the character is talking about
a kind of spiritistic session she is going to. But what
exactly does "spuggies" mean? I haven't found this word in any
dictionary and would therefore be glad if anyone of you could
tell me its exact meaning. Thanks, M. Kranz
I wonder the exact same question!!!!!!!
Hasn't this question been answered in the last 22 years? I am
reluctant to go to Google Gropes to see the entire thread.
Several people mentioned sparrows. I like Katherine Harper's
suggestion that it was the character's whimsical variant of
"spooks".
In support of that, I have seen it suggested, while looking around, that
the word as used by Basil Bunting in the epigraph of his free-verse poem
"Briggflatts", "The spuggies are fledged" was intended to be pronounced
with a "hard 'g'" and in a Northern accent: ['spUgiz], perhaps.

But there is also the famous tendency of sparrows to fall while God is
watching. Ghosts of the war dead?
Post by Jerry Friedman
If anyone's interested in the passage in the book,
https://books.google.com/books?id=aazHAAAAQBAJ&pg=PT46
Couldn't find it there, but Gooboo has previews.
Katy Jennison
2020-01-10 20:58:00 UTC
Permalink
Post by CDB
Post by Peter Moylan
Post by a***@ashbournecollege.co.uk
I read the following phrase in "The ghost road", a novel by British
authoress Pat Barker: "The spuggies aren't everybody's cup of tea."
As context shows, the character is talking about
a kind of spiritistic session she is going to. But what
exactly does "spuggies" mean? I haven't found this word in any
dictionary and would therefore be glad if anyone of you could tell
me its exact meaning. Thanks, M. Kranz
I wonder the exact same question!!!!!!!
Hasn't this question been answered in the last 22 years? I am
reluctant to go to Google Gropes to see the entire thread.
Several people mentioned sparrows.  I like Katherine Harper's
suggestion that it was the character's whimsical variant of "spooks".
In support of that, I have seen it suggested, while looking around, that
the word as used by Basil Bunting in the epigraph of his free-verse poem
"Briggflatts", "The spuggies are fledged" was intended to be pronounced
with a "hard 'g'" and in a Northern accent: ['spUgiz], perhaps.
But there is also the famous tendency of sparrows to fall while God is
watching.  Ghosts of the war dead?
If anyone's interested in the passage in the book,
https://books.google.com/books?id=aazHAAAAQBAJ&pg=PT46
Couldn't find it there, but Gooboo has previews.
Common name for sparrows here is 'spadgers', with a soft g. But I
haven't looked up the poem.
--
Katy Jennison
CDB
2020-01-11 14:39:58 UTC
Permalink
Post by Katy Jennison
Post by CDB
Post by Jerry Friedman
Post by Peter Moylan
Post by a***@ashbournecollege.co.uk
I read the following phrase in "The ghost road", a novel by
British authoress Pat Barker: "The spuggies aren't
everybody's cup of tea." As context shows, the character is
talking about a kind of spiritistic session she is going
to. But what exactly does "spuggies" mean? I haven't found
this word in any dictionary and would therefore be glad if
anyone of you could tell me its exact meaning. Thanks, M.
Kranz
I wonder the exact same question!!!!!!!
Hasn't this question been answered in the last 22 years? I am
reluctant to go to Google Gropes to see the entire thread.
Several people mentioned sparrows. I like Katherine Harper's
suggestion that it was the character's whimsical variant of
"spooks".
In support of that, I have seen it suggested, while looking around,
that the word as used by Basil Bunting in the epigraph of his
free-verse poem "Briggflatts", "The spuggies are fledged" was
intended to be pronounced with a "hard 'g'" and in a Northern
accent: ['spUgiz], perhaps.
But there is also the famous tendency of sparrows to fall while God
is watching. Ghosts of the war dead?
Post by Jerry Friedman
If anyone's interested in the passage in the book,
https://books.google.com/books?id=aazHAAAAQBAJ&pg=PT46
Couldn't find it there, but Gooboo has previews.
Common name for sparrows here is 'spadgers', with a soft g. But I
haven't looked up the poem.
Poem and word were both new to me, although I read as much of Bunting's
text as I could find. The only use of the word I saw was in the epigraph.

One Northern form of the word that I saw elsewhere was "spog", which I
suppose would have had the hard "g".
Peter Moylan
2020-01-11 21:45:50 UTC
Permalink
Post by Katy Jennison
Common name for sparrows here is 'spadgers', with a soft g. But I
haven't looked up the poem.
I'm trying to remember what we called them WIWAL. Something similar but
not identical to that. Possibly spidgies.
--
Peter Moylan http://www.pmoylan.org
Newcastle, NSW, Australia
Peter Moylan
2020-01-11 22:11:30 UTC
Permalink
Post by Peter Moylan
Post by Katy Jennison
Common name for sparrows here is 'spadgers', with a soft g. But I
haven't looked up the poem.
I'm trying to remember what we called them WIWAL. Something similar but
not identical to that. Possibly spidgies.
Found it. Yes, it was spidgies.

http://ozwords.org/?tag=spidgie

I haven't seen one for many years, by the way. They seem to have
disappeared from this area.
--
Peter Moylan http://www.pmoylan.org
Newcastle, NSW, Australia
Katy Jennison
2020-01-12 08:08:38 UTC
Permalink
Post by Peter Moylan
Post by Peter Moylan
Common name for sparrows here is 'spadgers', with a soft g.  But I
haven't looked up the poem.
I'm trying to remember what we called them WIWAL. Something similar but
not identical to that. Possibly spidgies.
Found it. Yes, it was spidgies.
    http://ozwords.org/?tag=spidgie
I haven't seen one for many years, by the way. They seem to have
disappeared from this area.
Ah, a excellent list in that link: 'Posted in British dialect, fauna,
regionalism [...]: spadge, spadger, Spadger's Lane, spag, spagger,
sparrow, spidgie, spoggy, sprag, spraggie, sprig, spriggy, spug, spuggy,
spyug, squidgie'
--
Katy Jennison
Sam Plusnet
2020-01-12 18:43:22 UTC
Permalink
Post by Katy Jennison
Post by Peter Moylan
Found it. Yes, it was spidgies.
     http://ozwords.org/?tag=spidgie
I haven't seen one for many years, by the way. They seem to have
disappeared from this area.
Ah, a excellent list in that link: 'Posted in British dialect, fauna,
regionalism [...]: spadge, spadger, Spadger's Lane, spag, spagger,
sparrow, spidgie, spoggy, sprag, spraggie, sprig, spriggy, spug, spuggy,
spyug, squidgie'
Squidgie?? I don't like the sound of that one.
--
Sam Plusnet
Jerry Friedman
2020-01-13 01:26:36 UTC
Permalink
Post by Katy Jennison
Post by Peter Moylan
Found it. Yes, it was spidgies.
     http://ozwords.org/?tag=spidgie
I haven't seen one for many years, by the way. They seem to have
disappeared from this area.
Ah, a excellent list in that link: 'Posted in British dialect, fauna,
regionalism [...]: spadge, spadger, Spadger's Lane, spag, spagger,
sparrow, spidgie, spoggy, sprag, spraggie, sprig, spriggy, spug,
spuggy, spyug, squidgie'
Squidgie??  I don't like the sound of that one.
Try thinking of something else. Maybe you should have a nice shandy.
--
Jerry Friedman
David Kleinecke
2020-01-12 18:12:53 UTC
Permalink
Same here. Fifty years ago sparrows were by far the most common birds.
Nowadays they have disappeared in many places.
Cause unknown. There are speculations that it may be some virus.
Some pockets survive though.
I know a motorway stop which has lots of very tame ones.
They will come and sit on your table, expecting to be fed,
The Costco that my wife shops in has a (covered) outdoor seating area.
If you order food you do so at a window and then take the food (pizza,
hot dogs, and other things) to a table. The tables are rows of
picnic-like wooden tables with bench seats.
The diner has to fight off the sparrows lest they swoop down and steal
food right off the table. They are also underfoot scrounging around
for dropped bits.*
Because this annoys some people, Costco tried to reduce the sparrow
population by hiring some people with nets on poles to capture them.
That *greatly* annoyed other people. The problem was that the area is
filled with sparrows during the times when a lot of people are eating,
and any capturing has to be done with witnesses. Costco can't figure
out where the sparrows go in the hours where there are no crowds.
A couple of years ago I was sitting at one of the table while my wife
was inside shopping. A rather heavy-set woman in a long-skirted dress
was sitting at one of the tables. A floor-scrounging sparrow flew up
her dress.
The resulting screams, wild gyrations, and attempts to free the
sparrow resulted in two other patrons being knocked to the floor. Best
time I ever had at Costco.
We observed the same avian behavior in Hilo - but I don't think the
birds there are sparrows. We call them Hawaiian Restaurant Birds.

PS: It is almost certain I will never go back to Hilo again and never
learn whether the HRBs still thrive.
RH Draney
2020-01-12 20:09:44 UTC
Permalink
The Costco that my wife shops in has a (covered) outdoor seating area.
If you order food you do so at a window and then take the food (pizza,
hot dogs, and other things) to a table. The tables are rows of
picnic-like wooden tables with bench seats.
The diner has to fight off the sparrows lest they swoop down and steal
food right off the table. They are also underfoot scrounging around
for dropped bits.*
I once watched a bunch (can't really call 'em a flock; they arrived and
operated separately) of grackles at an outdoor table that I *thought*
were harvesting someone's leftover french fries...pointed it out to a
waiter and he corrected me: "no", he said, "they're taking packets of
sugar"....

Sure enough, they were raiding the condiment basket at the table...some
would grab a packet and fly off with it to be dealt with elsewhere;
others would pull one out and peck it open right there on the tabletop
and begin eating....r
J. J. Lodder
2020-01-12 22:14:12 UTC
Permalink
Post by RH Draney
The Costco that my wife shops in has a (covered) outdoor seating area.
If you order food you do so at a window and then take the food (pizza,
hot dogs, and other things) to a table. The tables are rows of
picnic-like wooden tables with bench seats.
The diner has to fight off the sparrows lest they swoop down and steal
food right off the table. They are also underfoot scrounging around
for dropped bits.*
I once watched a bunch (can't really call 'em a flock; they arrived and
operated separately) of grackles at an outdoor table that I *thought*
were harvesting someone's leftover french fries...pointed it out to a
waiter and he corrected me: "no", he said, "they're taking packets of
sugar"....
Sure enough, they were raiding the condiment basket at the table...some
would grab a packet and fly off with it to be dealt with elsewhere;
others would pull one out and peck it open right there on the tabletop
and begin eating....r
Unknown in rightpondia, but they look like some kind of crow.
Maybe they are just as intelligent,

Jan
RH Draney
2020-01-12 22:29:42 UTC
Permalink
Post by J. J. Lodder
Post by RH Draney
The Costco that my wife shops in has a (covered) outdoor seating area.
If you order food you do so at a window and then take the food (pizza,
hot dogs, and other things) to a table. The tables are rows of
picnic-like wooden tables with bench seats.
The diner has to fight off the sparrows lest they swoop down and steal
food right off the table. They are also underfoot scrounging around
for dropped bits.*
I once watched a bunch (can't really call 'em a flock; they arrived and
operated separately) of grackles at an outdoor table that I *thought*
were harvesting someone's leftover french fries...pointed it out to a
waiter and he corrected me: "no", he said, "they're taking packets of
sugar"....
Sure enough, they were raiding the condiment basket at the table...some
would grab a packet and fly off with it to be dealt with elsewhere;
others would pull one out and peck it open right there on the tabletop
and begin eating....r
Unknown in rightpondia, but they look like some kind of crow.
Maybe they are just as intelligent,
Not quite, but higher on the scale than either doves or the raptors we
also have round these parts...they seem to be right on the bubble of
true self-awareness; I've seen some grackles puzzled by their reflection
in a window (apparently assuming it's another bird to be dealt with)
while others recognize it as themselves and set to preening....

I've also seen the leader of a grackle foraging party fight off one of
his (it's always an alpha male) own entourage at a food source that's
plentiful enough to feed everyone...at some point, one of the females
will make a very conspicuous attempt to steal part of what the head
honcho is eating, distracting him just enough that the rest of the group
can come in from behind and grab portions for themselves...he never
seems to catch on to the ploy, and I often wonder if the hens take turns
playing decoy....r
b***@shaw.ca
2020-01-12 23:14:52 UTC
Permalink
Post by J. J. Lodder
Post by RH Draney
The Costco that my wife shops in has a (covered) outdoor seating area.
If you order food you do so at a window and then take the food (pizza,
hot dogs, and other things) to a table. The tables are rows of
picnic-like wooden tables with bench seats.
The diner has to fight off the sparrows lest they swoop down and steal
food right off the table. They are also underfoot scrounging around
for dropped bits.*
I once watched a bunch (can't really call 'em a flock; they arrived and
operated separately) of grackles at an outdoor table that I *thought*
were harvesting someone's leftover french fries...pointed it out to a
waiter and he corrected me: "no", he said, "they're taking packets of
sugar"....
Sure enough, they were raiding the condiment basket at the table...some
would grab a packet and fly off with it to be dealt with elsewhere;
others would pull one out and peck it open right there on the tabletop
and begin eating....r
Unknown in rightpondia, but they look like some kind of crow.
Maybe they are just as intelligent,
They are a large blackbird, according to audubon.org. They are common
in the eastern and southern parts of North America and having been
expanding westward, but have not managed to cross the Rocky Mountains.

bill
Jerry Friedman
2020-01-13 02:04:56 UTC
Permalink
...
Post by b***@shaw.ca
Post by J. J. Lodder
Post by RH Draney
I once watched a bunch (can't really call 'em a flock; they arrived and
operated separately) of grackles at an outdoor table that I *thought*
were harvesting someone's leftover french fries...pointed it out to a
waiter and he corrected me: "no", he said, "they're taking packets of
sugar"....
Sure enough, they were raiding the condiment basket at the table...some
would grab a packet and fly off with it to be dealt with elsewhere;
others would pull one out and peck it open right there on the tabletop
and begin eating....r
Unknown in rightpondia, but they look like some kind of crow.
Maybe they are just as intelligent,
They are a large blackbird, according to audubon.org.
Yes, but NTBCW the European Blackbird, which is a thrush. American
blackbirds are a family in a large group (*checks Wikipedia*), a
parvorder according to a recent study, whose only Old World
representatives are buntings.

Crows are in a different infraorder, which is the next step up from a
parvorder.
Post by b***@shaw.ca
They are common
in the eastern and southern parts of North America and having been
expanding westward, but have not managed to cross the Rocky Mountains.
More bird pedantry: You're talking about the Common Grackle. R and I
have Great-tailed Grackles, a bigger and more comical bird. Tony Cooper
has Boat-tailed Grackles, which are a lot like Great-tailed.
--
Jerry Friedman
Anders D. Nygaard
2020-01-10 16:47:42 UTC
Permalink
This e-mail and its attachments
The following is probably futile, but in case auyeungtszwing should
come across this usenet group again, what you have written and posted
is not an e-mail, but a usenet posting.

/Anders, Denmark.
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