THE ORIGIN OF “THE CATBIRD SEAT” (COMMENT).

THE ORIGIN OF “THE CATBIRD SEAT” (COMMENT). I posted here about how Nick is posting on a new blog affiliated with ESPN—The Catbird Seat. He and I associate the phrase with Hawk Harrelson, the White Sox announcer, with a usual meaning of a batter having a two ball, no strike count. Howard Johnson commented that he associated “the catbird seat” with the legendary great announcer Red Barber and with Barber’s “ramblings about his garden, birds and the weather in Tallahassee on Friday morning’s ‘All Things Considered.” I’m a little chagrined to have forgotten the connection. I used to treasure listening to Red Barber while driving to work. I had thought that the phrase was an old Southern expression, but this wikipedia entry attributes the origin of the phrase to Red Barber, with the first written use of the phrase being in a James Thurber short story (entitled “The Catbird Seat”). A character in the story uses the phrase, and another character says that she must have picked it up from Red Barber. Barber said that he picked up the phrase in a poker game in Cincinnati.

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One Response to THE ORIGIN OF “THE CATBIRD SEAT” (COMMENT).

  1. Nick says:

    For a second I thought you meant Howard Johnson – Former Mets Infielder.

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