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Re: Take care, TCB

Posted by Masakim on November 17, 2002

In Reply to: Re: Take care, TCB posted by R. Berg on November 17, 2002

: : : : : There is a lyric in the song, "Respect" by Otis Redding (Aretha Franklin's recording) that goes, "Take care of TCP." Does anyone know what TCP stands for?

: : : : It's a type of antiseptic mouthwash/disinfectant.

: : : Barney's absolutely right, but I don't think that TCP is a known brand name in the US, and anyway it struck me as a little unlikely that Aretha would be exhorting her listeners to look after their disinfectant.

: : : A little research reveals that what Aretha *really* sings is this:-

: : : R-E-S-P-E-C-T
: : : Find out what it means to me
: : : R-E-S-P-E-C-T
: : : Take care, TCB
: : : Oh, sock it to me, sock it to me [etc.]

: : : TCB was a slangy acronym used at the time standing for Take Care of Business. The Temptations apparently had an album out in roughly the same period called TCB - Takin' Care Of Business.

: : Elvis Presley made TCB jewelry-things (charms, maybe?) for his friends to wear around their necks. Takin' Care of Business must refer to some sort of activity or attitude, but I'm not quite sure what...

: I remember "taking care of business" used in the 1960s and after, as counterculture slang, to mean handling whatever external demand was pressing on one at the moment. Coping. "The plumber's coming about that leaky pipe. I gotta get up off the couch and take care of business." Its meaning was very general. A more specific meaning surfaced when Monica Lewinsky reported to the press that she and Bill Clinton had had phone conversations during which each of them was taking care of business.

Eugene E. Landy, in _The Underground Dictionary_ , defines "T.C.B." as "to do whatever needs to be done or what you plan to do."

Robert L. Chapman, in _Dictionary of American Slang, Third Edition_ , writes:
TCB (pronounced as separate letters) v black by 1970s To perform very well when one needs to do: "... where he is always to be found TCBing"--New Times [from _take care of business," found by 1955 among jazz musicians, apparently originally meaning "to copulate"]

Geneva Smitherman, in _Black Talk, Revised Edition_ , writes:
TCB Take care of business. See TAKE CARE OF BIDNESS.
TAKE CARE OF BIDNESS To seriously attend to or complete something; to get on with something, get down to business. Also TCB.
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Home boy, them Brothers is taking care of business! ... They walking in fours and kicking in doors; dropping reds and busting heads, drinking wine and comitting crime.... (Eldridge Cleaver, _Soul on Ice_, 1965)