U is for unsub (ABC Wednesday)

Unsub is an American television series that aired on NBC from February 3 to April 14, 1989.

My friend Dan wrote:

The word is “unsub.” Spellcheck doesn’t like it.

1) Google: Unsubscribe, as in cancel a subscription.

2) Everyone else: Unknown subject of an investigation. Used mainly by US TV crime shows.

Hmm, I don’t watch the crime shows, but let’s check it out.

Oxford Living Dictionary

1. Unsubscribe.
‘you won’t be spammed and you can unsub if you change your mind’

Origin
1990s: abbreviation.

2. US, informal
(in police use) a person of unknown identity who is the subject of a criminal investigation.
‘putting together these insights will help police come up with a composite picture of the unsub’

Origin
1970s: abbreviation of unknown subject or unidentified subject.

So the crime reference is EARLIER than the opt out reference

Urban Dictionary:
“Our unsub is most likely a white male in his mid 30s, with a penchant for Star Wars action figures, and chocolate milk-type beverages.”

Criminal Minds Glossary

(Unknown Subject) The term used by Profilers in lieu of a suspect’s name.

Quora:
Yes, the FBI uses this term in real life, every single day. In fact, it is one of the bureau’s official terms used in FBI reports of investigations (FD-302’s).

Wikipedia:
Unsub is an American television series that aired on NBC from February 3 to April 14, 1989. The series revolves around an elite FBI forensic team that investigates serial murderers and other violent crimes. Unsub is an abbreviation for the unknown subject of an investigation.

No, I had never heard of this show, which starred David Soul from Starsky & Hutch. It was on Friday nights at 10 p.m.

Amazon:

UNSUB: A Novel Hardcover – June 27, 2017
by Meg Gardiner (Author)

Caitlin Hendrix has been a Narcotics detective for six months when the killer at the heart of all her childhood nightmares reemerges: the Prophet. An UNSUB—what the FBI calls an unknown subject—the Prophet terrorized the Bay Area in the 1990s and nearly destroyed her father, the lead investigator on the case.

So, Dan, you are correct, sir. I had no idea.

ABC Wednesday – Round 20

T is for Tarantism

There are at least a dozen SEPARATE songs with the title Dance with Me, or a variation (Dance Wit’ Me. e.g.) that charted on the US charts.

dance1Tarantism (n.) is an illness characterized by the sudden urge to dance. More specifically, according to Merriam Webster, it is “a dancing mania or malady of late medieval Europe popularly regarded as being caused by the bite of the European tarantula (Lycosa tarentula).”

Here’s an interesting article about the topic. As I suspected Continue reading “T is for Tarantism”

Q is for Qualtagh

Sometimes, the first person I see after leaving the house in the morning is a grizzled old man smoking a cigarette because he is not allowed to do so in the house.

good-morning-this-morning (1)The Wiktionary defines qualtagh (Manx English) as “The first person one encounters, either after leaving one’s home or (sometimes) outside one’s home, especially on New Year’s Day.” Unused Words describes the word as “the first person one meets (either leaving or entering their house) after the start of the New Year.”

But the first reference I saw did not specify the New Year. So I started thinking about this Continue reading “Q is for Qualtagh”

Words QUESTION

There ARE a few words that I can specifically remember learning, and not just as a child, that I have regularly incorporated into my vocabulary.

The wallpaper is beginning to peel in our bedroom, probably because of a leak, now fixed by the new roof we got this summer. It’s always something with a house that’s about a century old. I said to The Wife, “This house is giving me agita.” She thought I had made up the word; I had not.

Agita (n) – a feeling of agitation or anxiety. “Judging by its spelling and meaning, you might think that ‘agita’ is simply a shortened version of ‘agitation,’ but that’s not the case. Both ‘agitation’ and the verb ‘agitate’ derive from Latin ‘agere’ (‘to drive’). ‘Agita,’ which first appeared in American English in the early 1980s, comes from a dialectical pronunciation of the Italian word ‘acido,’ meaning ‘heartburn’ or ‘acid,’ from Latin ‘acidus.’ (‘Agita’ is also occasionally used in English with the meaning ‘heartburn.’) For a while the word’s usage was limited to New York City and surrounding regions, but the word became more widespread in the mid-90s.”

So the Wife says, “Where did you learn that word?” Continue reading “Words QUESTION”