Posted by James Briggs on August 17, 2003
In Reply to: Pink Slip posted by Bruce Kahl on August 17, 2003
: : Once in awhile you hear someone say when they are fired from their job, "I got the Pink Slip."
: : Does anyone know how " Pink Slip" came about?
: : Thanks
: From the Word Detective site:
: "A "pink slip" is a notice of dismissal or termination from one's job, also known as one's "walking papers." The term "pink slip" dates from the early 20th century, and originally referred to the practice of including a pink-colored slip of paper in an employee's weekly pay envelope notifying the worker of his or her termination. There does not seem to be any particular significance to the use of the color pink aside from the fact that it made the notice stand out from any other papers that might be in the envelope."
In Britain, if workers are dismissed from their job then they 'get the sack'. In the old days workers carried their own tools in a sack. This was deposited with their employer in order to look after the tools. When the worker was no longer needed or was dismissed he was given the sack back. The expression has now been partly replaced by to 'get one's cards' - the equivalent of the 'pink slip', I guess.