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Going postal

verb; compounding
To commit murder, mass murder, or a killing spree in the workplace, generally by a current or former employee This is a euphemism for being stressed and makes reference to problems within the postal service. Many postal employees snapped and went on shooting rampages. It derives from a series of incidents in which United States Postal Service (USPS) workers shot and killed managers, fellow workers, and members of the police or general public. The events could have been the result of poor or oppressive management that led to mental breakdown. Therefore, this term is a good example of widening (generalization) and has reached many speech communities because virtually all know about those incidents and most are stressed themselves.
 
And while focusing on a predisposition for “going postal,” none should be smug.
Etymology : From Middle English gon, from Old English gAn, from Old High German gAn “to go,” from Greek kichanein “to reach, attain” + from Middle English, from Old English, from Latin postis, from Latin por- “forward” and Latin stare “to stand” + Latin -al [adjective]
Source : “Going Postal I” by Stress Doc
Last modified: 10 June 2008


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