At home phrases

A while ago I ran through a few of the phrases that I use at home http://www.gamboling.co.uk/2009/02/tragedy-of-self-mong.html and yesterday I asked you for your suggestions http://www.gamboling.co.uk/2010/01/what-is-your-favorite-at-home-phrase.html. I’m sure everyone has this kind of thing, but Katherine and I seem to have more than most. Now I’m not really talking here about something like slugabed. This is a phrase that means kind of layabout. I’d never heard it before I started going out with Katherine. I assumed she had made it up, but no, apparently it’s a real word. This is rather like, “honest indians”, that I use and I assume is American. It means, “no this is really true”, or “I swear”.

But no, I’m talking about phrases here that have been created in the homestead or have been at least wildly taken out of context.

You’ve met me before

I don’t know where this comes from, but in some ways it is the most normal of this bunch, so I guess it gets to go first. This is used by me a lot to diffuse the mock shock and surprise that Katherine demonstrates when I go on one of my damn foolish idealistic crusades*. Eg.
Katherine: “Why are all of the spoons on the dining room table?”
Me: “I was trying to magnetise them.”
Katherine: “Why?”
Me: “You know… you’ve met me before.”

Tiny dinosaur arms

Katherine does have slightly shorter and weaker arms than me. I seem to remember suggesting that the reason she couldn’t open something one day was because she only had tiny dinosaur arms. I was thinking along the lines of the T-Rex style. However, this one has slightly backfired on me as I now often hear, “Can you do it? I can’t because of my tiny dinosaur arms”.

They’ll be closed

This one can be pinpointed exactly. In the first live stage show of the TV series Bottom, when very few lines of the play seem to be actually getting said, Rik Mayall says, “Come on, they’ll be closed”. Meaning the pub. This is invoked at home whenever one person is faffing. It sounds a pretty generic phrase but it still seems to cause confusion because other people say, “What’s closing? When’s it closing?”

Trouble with a capital TR

This is pretty straightforward as it goes. Some people are trouble, others are trouble with a capital T. Katherine is trouble with a capital TR. Because she’s more trouble than your traditional captial T Trouble-maker. This actually does rely on a strange understanding of the word trouble that we seem to employ, which is quite similar to cheeky.

Are you Joaquin Phoenix?

Well instead of saying “Are you joking?”, I tend to say, “Are you Joaquin Phoenix”. Yes I know. It’s not great is it?

Joaquin Phoenix it in

Well you must know that really you don’t pronounce Joaquin like joking. In fact it’s pronounced much more like “wha-keen”. And in my addled mind it sounds a bit like “whacking” hence “so take that cake and just Joaquin Phoenix it in the oven”. Yes it does tend to get me looks.

[And sighs from your Editor as you can spell neither Joaquin nor Phoenix. I thank the stars that these are spoken phrases.]

* This is from Indiana Jones and the last crusade. I’m pretty sure Nick said this about some crazy scheme I was plotting when I was about 12 or 13. It’s been accurate ever since.

11 thoughts on “At home phrases

  1. Christine says:

    I do like "You've met me before." I would quite like to start using this, too 🙂

  2. Igor says:

    Last night it was ‘chilly bonkers’ when I got into bed, which contrasts with the brightness of the summer when I am often looking for my ‘sun galoshes’. Now this is probably a different category from an ‘At Home Phrase’… probably more a mangled word, like refrigepator… Are there rules?

  3. Alex Andronov says:

    Ah I recognise Chilly Bonkers from my youth although (as I think this was in the first post) I have started going for "Monkey Sheets".It may be a different category. But I think there is a malapropism when you do it once. I think it becomes and at home phrase when you keep doing it and then others take it on as well.

  4. Nick Ollivère says:

    I think it's actually from Star Wars. Obi-Wan Kenobi says it to Luke as he gives him the light sabre, saying he would've given it to him earlier but his uncle forbade it fearing he'd lead him on 'some damn fool idealistic crusade'.I'm not sure if it was me or Charlie who said it. Also connected is 'delusions of grandeur' from I think Empire Strikes Back.

  5. Nick Ollivère says:

    As for an 'at home phrase', I'd like to offer just one word 'memento'. Gill sometimes confuses the word 'momentum' for 'memento' (which is understandable enough), but I thought this so funny that I started swapping them round too, and even for other similar sounding words, such as 'moment'. It's reached such an extent that we used 'memento' for any word that we can't quite remember, or just to make the other laugh.

  6. Alex Andronov says:

    I wasn't sure if it was you or Charlie but of course now I remember it is of course Star Wars. Funnily enough that you mention Charlie as he is the "Charlie from my school" who is in that other phrase.

  7. Igor says:

    I’m also rather prone to saying “we’ll throw ourselves off that bridge when we reach it”…

  8. kris says:

    Isn't it "honest injun" rather than "indians"? Or is that a whole different kettle of ball games?

  9. Alex Andronov says:

    It is/was injun is apparently now considered a word that shouldn't be said.

  10. kris says:

    Do "they" claim that "honest indians" is an acceptable thing to say, then? In comparison, like.

  11. Alex Andronov says:

    Well I don't know. The phrase as it stands is non-ironic. It is basically saying, "I will tell you the truth and not be duplicitous". The word itself is now considered to be a racial slur. I'm not sure about the sentiment. Perhaps it is?

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