Words: haze, v.

FRANKLIN SMITH of Wisconsin has found that his bottom is worth $1m. Many a fashion model might wonder what a computer analyst has that he hasn't. On joining Phillips Getschaw, he was hazed by the firm's tautologous "chief executive officer", Kurt Getschow. That is, initiated - with a builder's level across the buttocks, for which the court gave damages.

The OED is hazy on haze - perhaps from Northern dialect and the French haser, to frighten. In 1887, Yale claimed it "practically dead and buried"; five years on, it "led to the death of an unfortunate young student named Rustin". Mr Getschow should now simply adopt the 19th-century Princeton custom of making newcomers stand on the street corner and regale bystanders with the reciting of Greek.