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Old 04-10-2008, 03:57 AM   #1
richteer richteer is offline
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Question Pull the trigger

I've seen many people here use the expression "pull the trigger" when they have bought or are about to buy something (e.g., "I pulled the trigger on a new receiver and it'll arrive on Tuesday"). What's the etymology of this expression?

Klueless in Kelowna
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Old 04-10-2008, 04:13 AM   #2
PIHB PIHB is offline
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http://www.urbandictionary.com/defin...ll+the+trigger

im sure one of these will hold some meaning
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Old 04-10-2008, 02:30 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PIHB View Post
http://www.urbandictionary.com/defin...ll+the+trigger

im sure one of these will hold some meaning
Looks like the 3rd definition is most appropriate--thanks!
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Old 04-10-2008, 07:03 PM   #4
Mr. Hanky Mr. Hanky is offline
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I must be "getting old", cuz I had no idea any of those definitions were associated with the term "pull the trigger".

I've always associated the term with firing a gun and committing to some pivotal course of action. In that respect, it always creeps me out when people use that term to describe them finally buying some big purchase, signing on to some expensive cable service, etc. To me, it's like they are trivializing shooting to kill somebody or some living thing with something as relatively unserious as buying something (like they achieved some incredible feat). Naturally, they may have something else on their mind (as demonstrated by the urban dictionary site) when they use the term, but like I said, it creeps me out to observe people use the term with such little regard combined with what I associate to the term.

To me it is similar to when people use the word "rape" to describe all sorts of other events other than the literal criminal act that the word belongs to. It also irks me when the media is so quick to use the term "war" when it comes to 2 competing formats/standards/hardware entities/etc coming into the fray to win a market. I think it trivializes the word, which does disservice to the dark, brutal, and gruesome nature of real wars occurring somewhere in the world, where real people are getting killed and slaughtered.
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Last edited by Mr. Hanky; 04-10-2008 at 07:20 PM.
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Old 04-10-2008, 07:11 PM   #5
DutchBoy DutchBoy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Hanky View Post
To me, it's like they are trivializing shooting to kill somebody or some living thing with something as relatively unserious as buying something (like they achieved some incredible feat).
Methinks you are taking words and pigeon-holing them into only one meaning, the one that you attribute to them.

Being one of the ones who uses the phrases fairly frequently, I kind of take exception to the notion that I am in some way possibly "trivializing killing another human being." That's simply not the case.

I do see where you are coming from, and not belittling your opinion in any way. Words can mean many things, however.
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Old 04-10-2008, 07:16 PM   #6
Mr. Hanky Mr. Hanky is offline
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That's why I qualified my observation with "to me".

Certainly, we will not come to an agreement on this. I'm simply expressing my particular point of view, based on where I believe the real origin of the term lies. I still feel it is in poor taste (despite its cavalier usage in current vernacular) to have even evolved these other meanings from the original meaning. I fully expect that consensus would not stand with me on this.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DutchBoy View Post
Methinks you are taking words and pigeon-holing them into only one meaning, the one that you attribute to them.
That's really the cruxt of the theme I'm trying to convey- that there are certain words or terms that should never have been re-adapted/evolved to mean other things in modern culture. Some things should just be reserved to mean one thing and one thing only, in order to do justice to the grim or serious topic that originated the meaning, in the first place.
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Last edited by Mr. Hanky; 04-10-2008 at 07:24 PM.
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Old 04-10-2008, 07:25 PM   #7
jw jw is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PIHB View Post
http://www.urbandictionary.com/defin...ll+the+trigger

im sure one of these will hold some meaning
Thats some good stuff there, reminds me of the little Johnny joke, the ebonics one
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Old 04-10-2008, 07:27 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jwbbud View Post
Thats some good stuff there, reminds me of the little Johnny joke, the ebonics one
yah, i love urban dictionary. has some good stuff in there.

this is one of my favorites. its called "selling popcorn"
http://www.urbandictionary.com/defin...elling+popcorn
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Old 04-10-2008, 07:27 PM   #9
Rob71 Rob71 is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by PIHB View Post
http://www.urbandictionary.com/defin...ll+the+trigger

im sure one of these will hold some meaning
4 and 6 were new to me.
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Old 04-10-2008, 07:51 PM   #10
DutchBoy DutchBoy is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Hanky View Post
That's why I qualified my observation with "to me".

Certainly, we will not come to an agreement on this.
No, I know. I wanted to make sure you understood I appreciated your position.

It's actually refreshing to hear this opinion -- makes me think about the way I use some of the words, or phrases, that I do. And that's always a good thing.

Still, being from the south, you're right -- I'll probably never see anything wrong with "pulling the trigger".
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Old 04-10-2008, 08:13 PM   #11
dialog_gvf dialog_gvf is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by richteer View Post
I've seen many people here use the expression "pull the trigger" when they have bought or are about to buy something (e.g., "I pulled the trigger on a new receiver and it'll arrive on Tuesday"). What's the etymology of this expression?

Klueless in Kelowna
Pull the trigger == Take a shot == Give it a try/take the plunge/accept the risk

Gary
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