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I am out of pocket until 3:30

Don Woodall, an old friend of mine, received an email that closed with the sentence “I am out of pocket until 3:30”.   He contacted me, indicating that “out of pocket” normally means paid from personal funds or money lost in a transaction, but that the speaker meant “unavailable” or “out of communication”.  While this is more of a misused expression, it does mix out of touch with out of pocket.  Interestingly, Don points out that the Urban Dictionary says over the past half year or so, “out of pocket” has become a new business catchphrase meaning.  So, considering the upcoming holiday, Malaphors will be out of pocket until Monday!  Thanks to Don Woodall for this one!

http://www.urbandictionary.com/define.php?term=out+of+pocket

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One Comment on “I am out of pocket until 3:30”

  1. I think that the use of “out of pocket” for “unavailable” comes from football; the quarterback stays in the “passing pocket,” maintained by the offensive line, so he can make a clean throw. If the line breaks or he decides to run the ball, he goes “out of pocket.” The jump from there to “not where he’s expected” is pretty easy.


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