Instructables

How much is a butt load?

I have been researching how much is in a but load. Is there an exact amount, is an average. Is there a formula used to determine this. If so what could it be applied to?

gmoon2 years ago
A butt is two hogsheads; approx 475 liters, or 126 US gallons.

:-)
Wow! There's an actual unit of volume called a butt. That may indeed be the quantitative answer OP is searching for. I had no idea it was a real unit. Go figure.
WWC (author)  Jack A Lopez2 years ago
I am with Jack WOW!!
"The wino and I know", to quote Jimmy Buffet ;-)
WWC (author) 2 years ago
I was convinced of the answer by Jack A Lopez and others until gmoon came along. All the answers were great but i would have to say gmoon is correct.


Thank You Very Much.
waynesworldcafe
lemonie2 years ago
Maybe the answer is here...?

L
Jack A Lopez has given THE definitave answer.

There is also a more polite term "boat load" which means exactly the same thing, but can be said on national TV and in polite company. It means "an excessive amount", not necessarily just how much of something can fit into a boat. It can be used, "I can't play today, I have a whole boat load of homework to do."

I am not sure which term came first or if they arose independently. I always assumed that "boatload" arose from a large shipment of something, as in "They got a whole boat load of bananas at the grocery store and they are on sale, half-price!".
Other answerers have so far defined buttload to mean an ambiguously "large" amount of something, e.g. "a bunch" or "a whole lot". 

However, I think, the essential property of the word "buttload" is excessiveness.  It is an amount that is too large, so large that it is troublesome.  That is to say it is an amount amount of something so large, that there is excess, and the questions like "What to do with the excess?" and "Is this amount really necessary?" are imediately raised.  Some more vulgar synonyms of "buttload" include the words, "sh!tload", "@ssload", and "pantload", and these all include implications of disgusting waste, excess, and "This is too much. This is uncomfortable.  How do I get rid some (or all?) of it?"

For example,  if you were to apply a buttload of current to the base of BJT transistor, this would definitely put the transistor outside its active region,
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bipolar_junction_transistor#Active-mode_NPN_transistors_in_circuits
definitely be enough current to drive it into the saturation region, and posssibly be enough base current to cause excessive heating and burn out the transistor.  In summary, this would be just too much base current, more than was really necessary to get the job done.

However the connotation "buttload" need not necessarily be a negative one.  Depending on the circumstances, sometimes doing something in excess, is just  the way that things get done.  For example:  "That darned firewood was completely wet, so I just poured a buttload of lighter fluid on it, then stood back about ten feet, and threw a lit match at it and FOOOOM!!!  That got it started alright!"

As another example, the most profound use of the word buttload, or one its synonyms, in popular music, that I have ever heard, has to be that song "Shut Your Mouth" by Garbage.  It's at 2min+20s, and the lyric refers to making a "sh!tload" [of money].  Regarding the Youtube link below, please note that this video contains a certain amount of foul language, and allusions to American (aka Former American) culture which may also be considered vulgar, depending on where you're from.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ptr5CpFM2uI
Note the song does not actually include the word "money" in its lyrics, but this is clearly implied.  Clearly making a buttload of money is part and parcel of what it means to be a successful rock star, which is the theme of the song.,and also the legendary "American Dream" which is basically all about money. This is  the American definition of success: to have money, and to have money in excess, so much that it you don't know what to do with it all, in other words a buttload of money.
+10
Burf2 years ago
In the common American vernacular it means "a bunch" or " a whole lot" of something.
WWC (author)  Burf2 years ago
Yes, But my question still hasn't been answered, How much is a butt load? How much is it? Is there a set value that can be used in an equation?
frollard WWC2 years ago
As per my answer, it is undefined.
Burf WWC2 years ago
Call it a variable, its value is whatever the speaker considers "a bunch" or "a whole lot."
kelseymh2 years ago
It is a term of humor. "Butt," in colloquial American English, refers to the human posterior. Hence, "butt load" is how much of something could be shoved up said posterior.
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