Buffaloed

Buffalo Head

Buffalo, or more correctly “bison”, is a large ox-like mammal of North America, commonly associated with the Wild West and a major resource for the American Indians.  But, have you ever heard the term “buffaloed”?

Buffaloed is the verb form of buffalo, used as slang to describe various forms of misfortune associated with settlers moving west in search of new beginnings .   Examples:  1) to swindle, hoodwink or deceive — Many pioneers, anxious to start a new life in America’s frontier were buffaloed by slick talking land agents who sold them barren farm ground.  2) to intimidate — The lone US Marshal buffaloed the bank robbers to throw out their guns and surrender.  3)  to pistol whip someone with the barrel of the gun rather than the butt.

I don’t hear this term very often and I don’t know its origin, but the term is very colorful.  The term has lost its significance over the years as buffalo became more scarce and fewer people understanding the animal’s behavior.  Standing next to a buffalo in  a zoo can explain their intimidating presence (they are HUGE), but I don’t get any sense that the buffalo could swindle or hoodwink me.

Thought for the Day:  You can fool some of the people all the time, and all of the people some of the time, but you can’t fool all of the people all the time.   Abraham Lincoln

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