Posted by ESC on April 28, 2000
In Reply to: Hogan's Goat posted by Bob on April 27, 2000
: : : Where did the phrase "as hosed as Hogan's goat" come from?
: : Charles Earle Funk, in Heavens to Betsy! and Other Curious Sayings Harper & Row, New York, 1955, has an entry for "Hogan's goat" that says when one says something is "like Hogan's goat," it means it "stinks terrifically." He says "Poor old Hogan is merely an innocent bystander in this modern Americanism. Just as with 'Hogan's brickyard,' a slang designation of a baseball diamond, the goat could be the property of Jones, Smith, or Rockefeller..."
: : I can't tell you why the goat went from stinking to being hosed.
: There are a number of Hogan's Goat sites. (!) See
: www.unclesam.net/cny/mil/hogan.htm to get started. There is a fine play by William Alfred that has a marvelous monologue in it, ideal for an actor's audition piece. It's an angry memory, spoken by a turn of the century Irish immigrant, who speaks of the horrors of crossing the Atlantic in steerage, with the filth and disease and crowding... then landing in America, and having an immigration officer turn up his nose at him. "In Amurrrica," the martinet tells him, "we bathe."
Small world. I went to the Hogan site you listed. And, surprise, it belongs to my fourth cousin's cousin. So that's why my fourth cousin asked me about "Hogan's goat" a few months ago.