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Left in the Lurch

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A restaurant manager in Kokomo, Indiana, had an employee who failed to show up for work. This left him wondering about the phrase left in the lurch. It probably derives from an old game similar to backgammon called lourche, the object of which is to one’s opponent behind on the board, or in other words, to leave them in the lurch. In Old French, lourche means “deceived,” “embarrassed,” “trapped,” or “duped,” and also came to mean “a place where hunters lie in wait.” This is part of a complete episode.

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