Posted by ESC on January 24, 2003
In Reply to: 24/7 posted by EveB on January 23, 2003
: Does anyone know when this phrase came into common use? Could it have been around in the 1980s, or is this a 90s thing?
24/7 - One source lists 24/7 under "rap" words. ("Speaking Freely: A Guided Tour of American English from Plymouth Rock to Silicon Valley" by Stuart Berg Flexner and Anne H. Soukhanov, Oxford University Press, New York, 1997).
A second places "twenty-four/seven" in the Hip-Hop & Rap chapter and says: "To be attentive 24 hours a day, seven days a week." ("Flappers 2 Rappers: American Youth Slang" by Tom Dalzell , Merriam-Webster Inc., Springfield, Md., 1996) There's no date for the expression. But it does say that hip-hop was created "as an alternative to the culture of gang violence in the mid-1970s in the Bronx and Harlem...By the mid-1980s, rap music as an expression of hip-hop culture had become the Next Wave of wider popular culture..."
I am wondering if 24/7 is a riff on the 7-11 convenience stores.