A cute little American colloquialism. It means about 18 minutes long, or, the amount of time it takes famed musical hack Arlo Guthrie to steam through the song 'Alice's Restaurant' for the billionth time.

I believe this phrase came into vogue when Rosemary Wood, the secretary for Richard Nixon in the Watergate years, 'accidentally' left her foot on the erase pedal, destroying data on some of Nixon's tapes. When later questioned about how long she did that, she replied, 'About an Alice.'

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