Blue Light (noun)
blou lit / rhymes with new might
Definition: A bus that provides free transportation throughout Tompkins County after six o'clock p.m; or the ride on the bus itself
Attested: I first heard this term when leaving Wendy's in college town and a friend remarked:
Example: It's 6:05; let's catch the blue light home.
Etymology: This is a term that is entirely unique to Tompkins County, and to the TCAT (Tompkins Consolidated Area Transit) public transportation system. A newcomer to Ithaca would have no way of knowing the meaning of "blue light" without an explanation and could not understand its meaning from the context. However, once this newcomer has experienced one trip on a blue light, the meaning of the term becomes clear. The term is also used to describe people who escort students home from classes after dark. The two meanings may be related because they are both part of a program to prevent crime and allow students to travel safely at night. The term probably originated from the blue lights spread throughout the Cornell campus for use to call for help in an emergency. The blue light buses are also used for the safety of Tompkins County residents, and therefore have come to share the name of the lights that work for the same purpose.
- Steve Glasgow Burn (verb).
[b^rn]; / rhymes with "turn"
Definition: slang term meaning to create a CD using a CDR or CDRW drive
Attested: I first came across this term in November 1999 in a conversation with several friends who had just gotten a new CD "burner." Since then, I've heard this term quite frequently to refer to the creation of CD's using this device
Example: "Can you burn me a copy of Quake III?"
Etymology: The phrase most likely originates from the notion that a CDR drive creates CDs using a fine tuned laser to "burn" grooves into a blank CD. The grooves in the CD allow the computer to read relevant data.
- Jason Li
burr-sir; / rhymes with "cursor"
Definition: n. a running account of a student's expenses which gets billed to his or her parents. v. to charge an expense to one's bursar bill.
Attested: I first came across this word in June 1999 when I received a letter from the University explaining the Bursar Bill.
Example: "At Cornell, a student can spend close to no money because expenses are either billed to the Bursar or Cornell Card." "You don't need to pay now because you can bursar it."
Etymology: According to The American Heritage College Dictionary, a bursar is "an official charge of funds, as at a college or university." And so it is apparent why the Cornell decided to use the word for the title of the financial record. The verb-form of the word is more unique to Cornell because it appears to be an accepted, slang term. Over time, instead of the phrase: "charge it to my bursar," the term: "bursar it," became more common and finally accepted.
- Rebecca Taylor