Archive for the ‘Catchphrases’ Category

Food rebellion

November 12, 2017

Yesterday’s posting “Rice pudding in the land of quilted steel” focused on diner rice pudding, but the Wikipedia article covers quite a large territory, including rice puddings in different cultures around the world and rice pudding in popular culture. On the latter front, there’s a humorous poem “Rice Pudding” by A.A. Milne (of Winnie the Pooh fame) that Benita Bendon Campbell has reminded me of. The poem takes off from the Anglo-American tradition of rice pudding as plain food for children or invalids — and shows young Mary Jane’s rebellion against the tradition: “She won’t eat her dinner – rice pudding again”.

(more…)

Off like a herd of turtles

November 6, 2017

Came up in a Facebook discussion involving Ann Burlingham and Aric Olnes, the catchphrase in this bit of digital art by Methune Hively:

 

off like a herd of turtles, referring to a very slow start or to slow progress after an auspicious start – based on the horse-racing announcer’s They’re OFF!, plus the legendary slowness of turtles, with the rhyming play thrown in.

(more…)

Bear chairs

September 23, 2017

Today’s Zippy lumbers through some plays on bear, in a bear chair:

(#1) The bear figure as both comforting and threatening

Bear chairs, gay bears, flags, and more.

(more…)

Solid Chet and lean Bo

August 28, 2017

Underwear ads again (from today’s Daily Jocks sale), with captions from me. Men’s bodies, mansex allusions, not for everyone.

(#1) Sweat with me, baby

Solid Chet the gym jock
Sweats hard
Lick the salt he’ll
Towel you off

(#2) Lowriders on the storm

Lean Bo the surf jock
Goes low pull him
Lower use your
Teeth those trunks are
Made for cruising

Sweaty Chet and lowball Bo.

(more…)

On the quote watch

April 14, 2017

An exchange on Facebook a few days ago, provoked by a 4/9/17 piece linking to 4/15/11 story “World’s languages traced back to single African mother tongue: scientists” on PRI (Public Radio International). Various annoyed responses, including, from Ben Zimmer:

No idea why this PRI piece has been making the rounds lately, but it’s about the old 2011 Science paper

My response:

On Facebook, everything old is new again.

— intending to use the boldfaced catchphrase (or cliché) to convey something like ‘fashions and trends are repeated or revived’. Then I wondered about the history of the expression, and found nothing useful in dictionaries of quotations, idioms, and clichés, at least for this wording used in this way. What I found were links to biblical quotations with different wording conveying rather different content; and then, from the 1970s on, a ton of examples of what was clearly recognized as a catchphrase / cliché, used much as I used it above.

As I note here every so often, I am not a lexicographer or a quotes investigator, and I don’t have the resources to pursue the history of expressions in their sociocultural context (though I do hang out with people who do these things, splendidly). So here I’m just setting the problem.

(more…)

Meaty matters

January 19, 2017

(Mostly about language, but male bodies and bodyparts play significant roles.)

Yesterday, a posting about a fantasy agency supplying male hustlers, featuring two meat + N compounds: meat market ‘sexual marketplace’ and meatmen ‘men considered as sexual objects’ (as bodies as wholes, but especially as assemblages of sexual parts — cock, balls, and ass).  The interplay of two senses of meat here (the body, especially the male body, as a whole vs. the central masculine bodypart, the penis) led me to two joking uses of meat, in a Pat Byrnes New Yorker cartoon from 2001 (in which the ‘animal flesh as food’ sense of meat is central) and a piece of advice on the Usenet newsgroup soc.motss from Joseph Francis some years ago (in which the ‘body as sexual object’ sense is central).

(more…)

The New Year’s resolution

January 6, 2016

Two days ago I posted a Mother Goose and Grimm strip on New Year’s resolution (#1 there, with the character Ralph confusing resolution and revolution). Now comes a Eugene Chan cartoon with a musical pun on resolution:

(#1)

It resolves to a G minor triad.

(more…)