Have any of you ever experienced curious jargon in the office? I guess the reason is to be an “insider”. The oddest one here at Boeing is that no-one ever calls an airplane a “seven-thirty-seven” or a “seven-forty-seven”. It’s always “seven-three-seven” and “seven-four-seven”. The only concession I’ve heard is that they will sometimes refer to the 777 as “triple-seven”.
Since this is the main product line around here it kind of stands out. Even people (like me) who are in no way connected with the commercial airplane side of the business, whose only experience with Boeing aircraft is flying in them as paying passengers, we still have to call them “seven-six-seven” to avoid being labelled as an ignoramus.
When I worked at Caterpillar we were cautioned not to refer to those tracked vehicles with the blade on front as Caterpillars, but that was in order to protect their brand name. They didn’t want to end up like aspirin. For the record the official name was “track-type tractors”. We didn’t even call them bulldozers, since technically the bulldozer is the blade and not the tractor. Most of the world wouldn’t make that distinction but it made sense in context.
My dad is a long-haul trucker and he is mortally insulted if you call a pickup a truck. In his world trucks have eighteen wheels. That four wheel object is a pickup. We used to razz him by referring to his pickup as a “utility vehicle” but now that SUVs are popular our joke has become reality.
“non sunt multiplicanda entia praeter necessitatem”
– William of Ockham