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  1. meliss's Avatar
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    #1

    Your average inbred ninety-six-pound weakling type

    Hi, it's a tour on the supposed grave (actually not) of the Archduke Franz Ferdinand. Why these ninety-six-pound? In some age yes, he could have such a weight, but what is the point here? Thank you.
    "the Archduke was born in December 1863 .. . but being the Austro-Hungarian emperorís nephew donít matter much. Unless, say, the emperorís only son, Rudolph, happens to shoot himself in the headówhich is what, in fact, happened in 1889. All of a sudden, Franz Ferdinand was next in line for the throne... well no one liked him because he was a total nerd,.. except he was one of those nerds who isnít even very smart. Your average inbred ninety-six-pound weakling type." (Abundance of Katherines by John Green)

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    #2

    Re: Your average inbred ninety-six-pound weakling type

    In the 1930s or '40s through the early' 60s or so, an American bodybuilder named Charles Atlas ran ads for a bodybuilding course in comic books. They featured a puny boy who weighed only ninety-eight pounds and was the frequent victim of much bigger bullies who kicked sand in his face at the beach.

    In the ads' heartwarming conclusion the hero had completed the Charles Atlas course, thanks to which he was no longer a ninety-eight pound weakling.

    I don't know why the prince was described as two pounds lighter.
    I am not a teacher.

  3. meliss's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Your average inbred ninety-six-pound weakling type

    Thank you. Are you sure it's the right reference? Because John Green, the author, was born in 1977, and the characters are about the 2000s children.

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    #4

    Re: Your average inbred ninety-six-pound weakling type

    Ninety-eight pound weakling entered American English as an idiom thanks to the Charles Atlas ads. Americans use the phrase whether or not they know its origin.
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    #5

    Re: Your average inbred ninety-six-pound weakling type

    The ads in Britain were directed at 'seven-stone weaklings'.

    'Stone' (=14 pounds) was the unit of weight in my childhood, many decades ago, for humans, fish and potatoes.

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    #6

    Re: Your average inbred ninety-six-pound weakling type

    You may, or may well not, be interested in this: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Charles_Atlas

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    #7

    Re: Your average inbred ninety-six-pound weakling type

    Quote Originally Posted by Piscean View Post
    The ads in Britain were directed at 'seven-stone weaklings'.

    'Stone' (=14 pounds) was the unit of weight in my childhood, many decades ago, for humans, fish and potatoes.
    I just saw a bit of an old film set in 1961 Dublin. A shop came into the frame with various prices displayed in its window. The most prominent was "Potatoes 4/- stone". Four shillings is twenty new pence, and a stone is fourteen pounds. In modern units, the price was £0.0314/kg.
    I am not a teacher.

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    #8

    Re: Your average inbred ninety-six-pound weakling type

    Quote Originally Posted by GoesStation View Post
    In modern units, the price was £0.0314/kg.
    I'll take your word on that.

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    #9

    Re: Your average inbred ninety-six-pound weakling type

    You could make a nice potato pi for just 3.14p/kg in those days.
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    #10

    Re: Your average inbred ninety-six-pound weakling type

    OP, sorry for hijacking your thread with silliness. To bring it back to your question, I'll mention that your average x is a familiar way to say "an everyday, ordinary x".
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