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Reach around

Posted by ESC on January 25, 2009 at 13:54

Reach around - I've heard this expression twice in a two-day period on TV (United States) and figured it was time to post on Phrase Finder. The meaning is on the Urban Dictionary site -- Cloris Leachman, speaking at the Bob Saget roast on Comedy Central (I couldn't sleep and that was all that was on.) said she was "giving reach arounds to Jack Benny" before Saget was born. (Which doesn't make sense given the definition.) And Stephen Colbert -- The Colbert Report, Comedy Central, Jan. 21, 2008 -- used the expression during an interview of NAACP President Benjamin Todd Jealous. Jealous said people who are successful should "reach back" and help others. Colbert asked if that was like a reach around. Jealous did not laugh.