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PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2003 12:53 am 
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Hello all. I'm new to this forum, as you can likely tell because I'm asking a question that's bordering on some "bad language" rules in certain generations of people. I apologise if I'm having bad effect on anyone's sensibilities (my tongue firmly implanted in cheek...).
I'm wondering where "kicking butt and taking names" originated. I seem to use it a lot, and yet Im not certain where it came from, or what it actually means. Hopefully, the context in which it was originally used will inform me about its meaning.

Thanks in advance for replying.

Sincerely yours, GeoThorn


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PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2003 8:09 am 
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Nobody else seems willing to wade in on this one, so here I go.

I suspect this is one of those wonderful vernacular sayings from that great old source known as Anonymous. I also suspect it was originally "kicking ass and taking names." "Kicking butt" is a more current expression.

What does it mean? I picture a foreman on the factory floor (in the 1940s?) breaking up a goof-off session among the hands. He might get physical, applying a boot where it will make a lasting impression, and he also might pull out his clipboard and write down the names of troublemakers. It also may have a military origin. Picture the same scene with a noncom and the enlisted men in his gentle care.

Does this make sense to anyone? And does anyone have something more official than my guesswork?

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True wit is nature to advantage dressed,
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2003 9:43 am 
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This got asked on another discussion forum last year and this was my reply then:

This appears to be just an expression. Couldn't source it to any point of origin.

The answer is to arm yourself and know how to kick ass and take names if the situation calls for it.
http://www.mindpollen.com/book/freedom1.htm

"Kick ass and take names."
~Unknown
http://greenlightwrite.com/quotationsac ... twrite.htm

“From what was written about Ike [Turner] he appears to be a brother from the old school who they say would "Kick Ass first and take names later" if this is true I am sure you want be seeing Tina with no brother no time soon.”

“In the Old Testament, when God pointed out evil and told them to kick butt and take names, the Israelites did just that, or faced dire consequences.”
http://markbyron.blogspot.com/2002_01_2 ... chive.html


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PostPosted: Thu Jan 23, 2003 2:47 pm 
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"There's a Man Going Round Taking Names" is a famous folk song (or did Leadbelly write it?) recorded by Leadbelly, Paul Robeson, Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan, etc.

Can anyone explain it to me. Is the man The Man? Or is he the Angel of Death? Or some real person in Leadbelly's life? And could this be the origin of the "taking names" part of the saying?

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True wit is nature to advantage dressed,
What oft was thought, but ne'er so well expressed.


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 Post subject: Wall Street
PostPosted: Sun Oct 30, 2011 10:54 pm 
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This doesn't help much with the origins, but the character 'Bud Fox' in the movie Wall Street made the phrase popular among financial traders when referring to beating the market.


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