In college I took History of the English Language, and we learned how the English language came about. We not only learned the meanings of words, but we learned where they came from. To this day, when I read the definition of something, I also read the etymology. At the end of the year, we had a project, where we were given a list of words. We had to look them up, say what part of speech they were, the etymology and use them in sentences. (I still have my Oxford English Dictionary used in that class, and the words from that list are highlighted. ) Procrustean also procrustean: adj. Showing no regard for individual differences or spacial circumstances; ruthlessly inflexible. (After Procrustes, a mythical Greek giant.) Procrustes was a bandit from Attica. He had his stronghold in the hills outside Eleusis. There, he had an iron bed into which he invited every passerby to lie down. If the guest proved too tall, he would amputate the excess length; if the victim was found too short, he was then stretched out on the rack until he fit. Recently, the phrase working blue bothered me. I knew what blue comedy is. Blue comedy that is off-color, risque, indecent, profane or obscene. But I never knew where that came from. My guess would've been the phrase "cursing a blue streak." Looking it up, I learned that the phrase came from a British music hall comedian Max Miller, who kept all of his adult jokes in a blue notebook. 'Working blue' refers to performing said material. A 'blue comedian' or 'blue comic' is a comedian who usually performs blue or is usually known for their blue material. Many comedians who are normally family-friendly might choose to work blue when off-camera or in an adult-oriented environment. An example would be Bob Saget.