heavy metal, Old English lead , from West Germanic *loudhom (cf. Old Frisian lad , Middle Dutch loot , Dutch lood "lead," German Lot "weight, plummet"). The name and the skill in using the metal seem to have been borrowed from the Celts (cf. Old Irish luaide ), probably from PIE root *plou(d)- "to flow."
Figurative of heaviness since at least early 14c. Black lead was an old name for "graphite," hence lead pencil (1680s) and the colloquial figurative phrase to have lead in one's pencil "be possessed of (especially male sexual) vigor," attested by 1902. Lead balloon "a failure," American English slang, attested by 1957 (as a type of something heavy that can be kept up only with effort, from 1904). Lead-footed "slow" is from 1896; opposite sense of "fast" emerged 1940s in trucker's jargon, from notion of a foot heavy on the gas pedal.
The show's characters; the depiction of people tested by circumstances and acting crazy to stay sane; and the ability to convey the message that it is people who count, not rules or ideals divorced from people's lives, are among the program's strengths. What is so interesting about the later MASH is that it treats many of its characters with the same humanity that the main characters manifest when they treat victims of the war and the system. Although this may sound a little corny and sentimental, the later MASH is a bittersweet depiction of the force of love as it tries to do its work in the field of death.
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