Warning: Acronym ahead!

At our franchise meeting this week, one person who's fairly new to our industry kept rolling his eyes as we threw acronym after acronym at him, from PCMA to TIA to ASAE to T&E. But when one of our new media guys asked for an example of something, and one of our magazine people said, "F&B," he said, "Are you swearing at me?" What we automatically filled in as "food and beverage," he heard as "effing b" (use your imagination). Once I wiped the tears of laughter out of my eyes, it made me think of when I first started this job and felt totally at sea, awash in mysterious letters that held great meaning, if I could only figure out what they stood for. I think we're pretty good at remembering to spell out our myriad industry acronyms, but obviously, not always. And it's not just acronyms, but all that jargon that now seems second nature, but to newbies might as well be Farsi. Check out this quiz, taken from an article written while back by a former colleague then new to the biz:


Pick the correct answer

Arrival Pattern

a) anticipated dates and times of arrival of group members;

b) the line formed by airplanes approaching an airport;

3) what quilting-bee contestants call their adversaries' coverlet


a) facility staff member who provides special services such as transportation and tour arrangements;

b) tour guide in a museum, educational facility, or art gallery;

c) slang for a bad smell — scent — and a person's reaction to it — “Doh!”

Dualing Menus

a) split (dual) entrées, such as surf and turf;

b) printing a lunch menu and dinner menu on the same document;

3) a fight between fast food restaurant staffers


a) term for good management through proper planning;

b) term for an arboretum's staff members;

c) one heck of a typo

Squirrel Cage

a) the area in which a speaker awaits his or her introduction;

b) Nicolas Cage's little brother;

c) revolving drum used for raffle tickets

Click on the comments to see the official answers.

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