Oct 18, 2018

Random Thursday

This Sports and Leisure chapter in The Little Book of Answers by Doug Lennox isn't as bad as I thought it would be! I'm not much of a sports fan but some of these factoids are rather interesting! Though, I am hoping for more "leisure" ones to pop up soon! LOL.

(image borrowed from WikiHow)
The saying that says a person "isn't up to scratch" comes from the early days of bare-knuckle boxing. Back then, a line was drawn across the center of the ring, dividing it in half. Fighters would start the fight here, or as they called it, "toeing the line." It's said that if the boxer wasn't able to toe the line without help from his seconds, then just wasn't "up to scratch."

That's totally new to me! Didn't realize that saying came from boxing!

(image borrowed from TutorialsPoint)
As mentioned before, in the early days of boxing, things were not how they are now. Before the boxers were in a circle surrounded by fans. When one got knocked out of the circle, fans simply pushed him back in. In 1867, the Marquess of Queensberry introduced a new set of rules that included three-minute rounds and a roped off square for fighting in that fans continued to call the "boxing ring."

(image borrowed from Wikipedia)
Kid McCoy was a talented boxer from the 1890s, but he couldn't get the champion to fight him. To make himself look like an easy mark he started to throw the odd bout. Fans weren't sure if they were seeing the "real McCoy, but his planned work! Making himself seem like a washout let him become the champion.

(image borrowed from Twitter)
Fistfights were considered lower class activities, especially in the early 1800s. The expression we know as "duking it out" came about around this time when Frederick Augustine, the then duke of York, soon took up the sport. This shocked the high society of England. The "Duke" gained a lot of admiration that soon other boxers would refer to their fists as their "dukes of York" and eventually just as "dukes."

That's interesting! Since I couldn't easily find a picture of Frederick, I thought The Duke would be the next best pick! Lol!

(image borrowed from Wikipedia)
The French nobility are the ones who made tennis a popular sport. For whatever reason, because zero looked like an egg, that's what they called it. Egg in French is l'oeuf which became the English "love." The seeding, or placing of the best players in their favored positions made the other players to cede those spots for them. Over the course of time, that word transformed to the spelling of its homonym, "seed", so players were to have "seeded" the positions. So in a roundabout way, this how tennis got the terms "love" and "seeded."

Honestly never knew any of this about tennis!

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