Posted by ESC on March 09, 2002
In Reply to: "Out of pocket" posted by ESC on March 09, 2002
: : : Our family has an email list and recently one person said: "sorry I have been lax in writing, but I have been 'out of pocket' the past couple weeks.
: : : I understood what she meant - not functioning up to par - but I another family member who continually scrutinizes everything said it meant 'spending money out of our pocket' as in 'out of pocket expenses'.
: : : I never for a minute thought that.
: : : Comments welcome.
: : I understand "out of pocket" the same way your other family member does: as describing casual outlays of cash or small expenditures, small in relation to bigger budget items. But, then, I too continually scrutinize everything.
: It has another meaning. Out of pocket means something like out of communication, out of range. If I find something more specific, I'll post it.
OUT OF POCKET - "Used in the Southwest for 'absent, unavailable.' 'I'll be out of pocket awhile, but I'll call you as soon as I can." From the "Happy Trails: Western Words and Sayings" chapter in the "Facts on File Dictionary of American Regionalisms: Local Expressions from Coast to Coast" by Robert Hendrickson (Facts on File, New York, 2000).