Who uses it: Truckers
What it means: Returning from a destination with an empty cargo hold, so without revenue.
How you can use it: To describe followthrough you're not getting paid for.
"Deadhead" is another one of those great phrases that means different things in different contexts. I almost used the gardening definition today -- pinching off the withered blooms of roses before they form seed pods, so they'll bloom again -- and of course most Americans think of "Deadhead" as referring to the Grateful Dead's traveling fans. According to one website I found, the term originally referred to people brought in to fill up an audience, without paying for tickets.
I hit the road again tomorrow for a couple of weeks, so have lots of errands to run today, plus a Gaslight board meeting. But I do want to say Happy Birthday to my friend Caroline, and to my nephews Matthew and Henry, who are three today.
First five songs off the iPod Shuffle this morning:
“For You,” Bruce Springsteen. A song that is both terribly sad and wildly optimistic, with all the painful romance of the very young. One of my all-time favorites.
“I Want You,” Elvis Costello & the Attractions. Another very young man's song, about the bitterness and anger of unrequited love.
“Stop Hurting People,” Pete Townshend. This album (All the Best Cowboys Have Chinese Eyes) would be with me on the desert island. "Tell me, friend, why do you stand aloof from your own heart?"
“Grey Day,” Madness. A little too appropriate -- we're getting more rain today...
“Every Time We Say Goodbye,” Betty Carter. A dreamy, idiosyncratic interpretation that almost turns the song into a lullaby.