Jewish World Review July 31, 2001 / 11 Menachem-Av, 5761

Ian Shoales

Ian Shoales
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Consumer Reports

Catchphrase history of the world -- AS part of my campaign to trivialize everything America believes in, I thought I'd take a stab at history, a personal intuitive history of the world as I know it, as revealed by its catchphrases. Let us call this then, a catchphrase history of the world.

In the beginning was the word, the medium is the massage. Is it an important message? Is it? Just look! Veni vidi vici. Eureka. Ich bin ein Berliner. Hey kids, what time is it?

What's up, Doc? Aren't you glad you use Dial? Ask not what your country can do for you. Ten four. Would you believe--? You bet your bippy. Look that up in your Funk and Wagnall's. Mom always liked you best. Trust me. You won't have Nixon to kick around any more. The story you have just seen is true, only the names have been changed.

It ain't rocket science. It ain't brain surgery. Chalk one up for me. Hi ho Steverino! Touche'. Smock smock! Book him Danno. Hi Bob. I can't believe I ate the whole thing. Stand by for news! He was once a little green slab of clay, faster than a speeding bullet.

Nattering nabobs of negativism. We're more popular than Jesus. It's the real thing. If he told me to stand on my head in the corner I would do it, in a respectable Republican cloth coat. Where's the beef? Voodoo economics. The evil empire. Go ahead. Make my day. That'll be the day. I am your father. I'll never be hungry again. Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn. Rosebud. A thousand points of light. Old soldiers never die, they just fade away, smarter than the average bear. The buck stops here. Give peace a chance. A stitch in time makes waste. Go softly amid the noise and haste, and do it in the road, just do it, divers do it deeper one day at a time. Today is the first day of the rest of your life, so reach out and touch someone. Let your fingers do the walking, because girls say yes to guys who say no, just say no, no way Jose! It's not my job, Meathead!

It's a terrible thing to lose your mind is a terrible thing to waste, but we need the eggs. I'm not a doctor but I play one on television. We will bury you, on a day that will live in infamy, let them eat cake. It does a body good. I cannot tell a lie--people listen. To be or not to be.. We will fight them on the beaches, we cannot dedicate, we cannot consecrate the war that will end all wars, the big one. This is the end my beautiful friend, America held hostage. Now he belongs to the ages, a new morning in America, the dawning of the age of Aquarius, the light at the end of the tunnel, every good boy does fine. Are you now or have you ever been--?.

Crest has been shown to be an effective decay preventive dentifrice when used in a conscientiously applied program of oral hygiene and regular professional care. I have a dream. I have a feeling we're not in Kansas any more. Nanu Nanu! Sister daughter sister daughter! Life's but a walking shadow, we don't need no stinking badges. Don't have a cow, man. He's dead Jim. Make it so. Don't sell that cow. You talkin' to me? Make him an offer he can't refuse. Top of the world ma! Will the mystery guest sign in please?

Come on Ricky, I want to be in the big show. Come alive, you're in the Pepsi generation. It's alive! It's alive! Tear down this wall. Up against the wall. All in all, it's just another brick in the wall You don't need a weatherman to know which way the wind blows. Smoking gun? A message to Libya?

Yes, Virginia there is a Santa Claus. Shining city on a hill. New Deal. Great society. Camelot. New World Order. I've fallen and I can't get up. We're good to go. It's all good. Talk to the hand! You go girl. Don't go there. Excuse me. But noooo. Never mind. I'm outta here. I'm history. I'm going to Disneyland. Courage.

And that's the way it is: garbage in, garbage out.

JWR contributor Ian Shoales is the author of, among others, Not Wet Yet: An Anthology of Commentary. Comment by clicking here.


07/26/01:The Bride of Science
07/23/01: That java jive
07/17/01: Homogenized hegemony
07/13/01: Applying Newton's First Law of Physics to textbooks
07/10/01: The dumb and the dead

© 2001, Ian Shoales