The Germany-England match this morning held great interest for the IJSF editorial staff. IJSF editor Rob Simmons is from England and IJSF associate editor Bernd Frick is from Germany. We will all be together next week, in Portland, Oregon at a conference hosted by the Western Economic Association that features sessions sponsored by both the North American Association of Sports Economists and the International Association of Sports Economists. A large number of sports economists will be in attendance.
In the interest of promoting international communication at the conference next week, I want to introduce readers to a quaint idiomatic expression from US English: to “take someone to the woodshed.” The idiom dictionary link defines it thus:
“If someone is taken to the woodshed, they are punished for something they have done.”
The idiom, as used by sports fans in the US, primarily by fans of US college football, is far richer and more nuanced than this definition suggests. When you take an opponent “to the woodshed” in college football, you have inflicted a humiliating defeat on that opponent, one that will be long remembered as an epic accomplishment. The game was not closely contested, and your opponent was helpless to stop the thrashing. Your team ran rough shod over the opponent. This phrase might come in handy next week in Portland.
Here’s a link to one of my all-time favorite woodshed games.