Wednesday, October 12, 2011

There's still life in the old lady yet!

I was making changes to my website the other day . . . revamping it, as it were . . . and that got me to thinking.  Yeah, it happens sometimes.  Thinking, that is.  Anyhoo, what has fixing stuff up have to do with vampires?  After all, is that what vamp is short for?  No, not at all . . . not even close, at least not originally before those damnable bloodsuckers absconded with the word.

Vamp also has nothing to do with those luscious, sultry women from the movies of the 1920s and 1930s that seduced and took advantage of silly, unsuspecting men. The word ‘vamp’ in that context does refer to vampires, however.

Actually, it has to do with shoes.  Yep, those thingy-majiggers that keep your feet warm and dry.  The word vamp (or vaumpĂ©) originates from the 13th century which was the "part of a stocking that covers the foot and ankle".  So, it’s a very old word, maybe even older than vampires  . . . maybe.

Back in the days when not everyone could afford to own a pair of shoes and those who could weren’t wasteful about the sizeable investment.  They wouldn’t just dump their worn shoes into a landfill and buy a new pair.  They re-purposed what they had.  Back then, you would take your worn shoes to the cobbler who would replace the ‘vamp’ . . .  ‘revamp’ your old footwear into something new(er). 

Eventually, ‘revamp’ came to figuratively mean to “make new again, renovate, revise or remake”.

So take that you bloodsucking fiends.

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