Discussion Forum

Please consider registering

sp_LogInOut Log In sp_Registration Register

Register | Lost password?
Advanced Search

— Forum Scope —

— Match —

— Forum Options —

Minimum search word length is 3 characters - maximum search word length is 84 characters

sp_Feed Topic RSS sp_TopicIcon
All Ate Up
sp_BlogLink Read the original blog post
Topic Rating: 0 Topic Rating: 0 (0 votes) 
Grant Barrett
San Diego, California
Forum Posts: 1522
Member Since:
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

If something’s got you feeling ate up, then you might be consumed by the notion that it didn’t go perfectly. You’re overwhelmed, obsessed, or maybe you’re just exhausted. However, among members of the Air Force, ate up has long meant gung ho. This is part of a complete episode.

Milwaukee, WI
Forum Posts: 17
Member Since:
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

For consumed/focused/obsessed, I’d personally prefer “eaten up”…

The Army usage of the term is not at all complimentary. To soldiers, it describes a person (or command structure) that is willfully incompetent and/or disorganized. Overwhelmed? Maybe…but by routine tasks that should NOT be overwhelming, to merit this description. The term can also be applied to situations or circumstances, analagous to (but not quite as extreme as) “FUBAR”. The closest it comes to Grant’s umbrella definition of “consuming/focused” (and this is a real stretch!) would be in the sense of “waste of time”, possibly from a sentence like “the brass ate up our whole day with make-work, then made us put it all back the way it was!” being reduced to the shorthand form of “today was totally ate-up!” or “this company is ate-up”.

Most recently, the term was particularily applied to (and within) the former 8th Infantry Division, whose symbol is the number eight bisected by an upward arrow (hence “eight-up”), which in the last few years of its existence (it was “drawn down” in 1992) reputedly was poorly run, badly prepared, had obsolete broken-down equipment, low morale, etc. This may be why the negative definition is more recent, and hasn’t gotten much traction (with the eponymous unit no longer active).

One unusual usage I personally overheard was a country-born sergeant dressing down a recruit with the statement “Pac-man done ate up yo’ brains with stupidity!”, but I have no idea where that man hailed from. Hmmmm, Pac-man… (‘< – – – –

Fort Worth, TX
Forum Posts: 457
Member Since:
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

This brings to my mind something purely personal. When I was in college, in the sixties, my friends and I would frequently ski out of Ruidoso, New Mexico.   At that time, low priced motel rooms went for about 20.00 a night and of course that’s what we tried to get. There was, however, one place that had many signs nailed to trees by the road that said, “Rooms – $8 up.”   Every time we went by one of those signs the comment was made, “If you stay there you’ll come away ate up.”

Forum Posts: 575
Member Since:
sp_UserOfflineSmall Offline

I often hear and read it in the form of a question, ‘what’s eating him?’ or a speculation, ‘something is eating him.’ But somehow the affirmative form, like, ‘this situation is eating him,’ as well all the affirmative forms discussed so far, do not ring any bell for me.

Forum Timezone: America/Los_Angeles

Most Users Ever Online: 1147

Currently Online:
44 Guest(s)

Currently Browsing this Page:
1 Guest(s)

Top Posters:

Heimhenge: 1096

deaconB: 744

Ron Draney: 721

Bob Bridges: 680

RobertB: 575

Robert: 551

tromboniator: 496

Dick: 457

samaphore: 312

dilettante: 287

Member Stats:

Guest Posters: 617

Members: 3161

Moderators: 1

Admins: 5

Forum Stats:

Groups: 1

Forums: 1

Topics: 3636

Posts: 18885

Newest Members:

charmdatebymn, Davidgew, WilburSox, Georgetar, ThomasErota, Kamertonchiknix, Tarre, haddydav, Andreevsn, DennisHor

Moderators: Grant Barrett: 1522

Administrators: Martha Barnette: 820, Grant Barrett: 1522, EmmettRedd: 857, Glenn: 1719, timfelten: 0