That’s right: embiggen. What? It’s a perfectly cromulent word. I have it here right in my Scrabble dictionary in between “d’oh” and “kwijibo.” And if you don’t like it, I’ll call you a craptacular, cheese-eating surrender monkey. (Or your non-union Mexican equivalent.)
Okay, so we know that The Simpsons has hit the big time language-wise, what with words like “meh,” “yoink,” and “d’oh” entering the dictionary and sayings like “I, for one, welcome our insect overlords” and “worst episode ever” entering the popular lexicon. These words and phrases still have power, and they’re still funny—after all, if they weren’t, the memes wouldn’t continue living on in blog posts, YouTube videos, and YTMND… things.
But I think we’re due for some new* Simpsons-related bon mots, don’t you? So I’ve scoured Simpsons episodes and episode guides for the top ten useful words and sayings that need to find their way back into our lives.
*And by “new,” of course, I mean old: all of these words and saying come from The Simpsons’ first through eighth seasons—you know, the good ones.
#10: “We’re here! We’re queer! We don’t want any more bears!”
From episode 3F20: Much Apu About Nothing
Context: After a bear wanders into town, Homer stages a protest.
To be used when: Protesting for gay rights; protesting bears; protesting anything, really
Example: You go to a rally to support gay marriage and you notice there are too many burly, bearded men in the vicinity.
Chosen because: As we learned from Dr. Stephen Colbert, D.F.A., there’s nothing higher on our communal threat lists than bears. Especially if you’re gay. I guess.
#9: “Good ol’ rock. Nothin’ beats that!”
From episode 9F16: The Front
Context: Bart and Lisa play rock, paper, scissors. Lisa knows that predictable Bart always chooses rock, and, naturally, he does so again.
Used in order to: Mock people who keep returning to the same old bags of tricks, especially when those tricks never work.
Example: The coach of your favorite college team has decided to run the ball straight up the middle AGAIN. Rolling your eyes, you say, “Good ol’ rock. Nothin’ beats that!”
Chosen because: Although most of us, like Bart, think we are brilliant tacticians, this is simply not the case. Now we have a go-to Simpsons quote available to us so we can mock others for the faults we ourselves have.
#8: “Johnny Deformed”
From episode 9F18: Whacking Day
Context: Marge tells Bart that the eponymous Johnny Tremain is deformed while silversmithing. He notes that perhaps more children would have chosen to read said book had it been titled “Johnny Deformed,” instead.
Part of speech: Title; proper noun
Definition: The correct name for the classic book “Johnny Tremain”
Example: “The best part of ‘Johnny Deformed’ was when he got deformed.”
Chosen because: I am an English teacher. Hey, we have to have some reason to laugh.
Personally my favorite that I use a lot is:
‘A little from column A, a little from column B.’ (Someone will have to remind me of when Homer says this)
I used this only last week in reponse to wifes question:
‘Are you drunk or just really tired?’
…or it might hav been…
‘Are you drunk or just messing with my head?’
I know it’s hard to integrate into everyday speech, however, this is by far one of my favorite quotes, for the sheer humor of it, and the image of Homer as he says it.
From Homer vs. the Eighteenth Amendment (around where they ran out of beer);
“…How ’bout some turpentine, or some caulk, delicious caulk.”
It always brings a smile to my face, makes me titter just like when I hear titmouse…
Ha I use “a little from column A, a little from column B” too. I believe it was said by Abe Simpson though.
I’m also fond of “the ironing is delicious”.
I always thought Bart said “a little from column A, a little from column B.” I’m too lazy to go look it up though.
I have to say that I do use “chock full of ___-y goodness” and when I’m being overdramatic I use a variation of “you turned/are turning X into a house of lifes!”
I also have a friend that uses “Good ol’ Rock. Nothing beats Rock!”
I would also say that Family Guy, at least in my circle of friends, is starting to populate its own set of vocabulary, taking The Simpsons spot since it’s drop in quality.
I love to reel off this brilliant speech from “Lisa’s Rival” when I am about to engage in something foolhardy
“I can’t live the buttoned-down life like you, Marge. I want it all! The terrifying lows, the dizzying highs, the creamy middles! Sure, I might offend a few of the blue noses with my cocky stride and musky odors- Oh I’ll never be the darling of the so-called “City Fathers” who cluck their tounges, stroke their beards, and talk about “What’s to be done with this Homer Simpson?”
“A little from column A, a little from column B” is, I believe, said by Abe in the episode where Homer’s mother first comes back and the FBI comes into the house to arrest her – immediately before, he’s been saying: “OK, I admit it! I am the Lindbergh baby! Wah wah! Goo goo! I want my fly-fly da-da!”
One of my most-often used quotations would be from “Flaming Moe’s”: “Oh, look at me! I’m making people happy! I’m the Magical Man from Happy-Land, in a gumdrop house on Lollipop Lane! Oh, by the way, I was being sarcastic.”
The column A, column B was used by Grandpa Simpson in the episode Mother Simpson (referenced in the article) when he was trying to stall the Dragnet parody detectives.
One of my favorite quotes:
Homer: ‘[E]very time I learn something new it pushes some old stuff out of my brain. Remember when I took that home winemaking course, and I forgot how to drive?’
Marge: ‘That’s because you were drunk!’
Homer: ‘And how.’
That last line I use a lot. Also good:
“Because they’re stupid, that’s why. That’s why everybody does everything.”
“Look Marge, you don’t know what it’s like — I’m the one out there every day putting his ass on the line. And I’m not out of order! You’re out of order! The whole freakin’ system is out of order! You want the truth? You want the truth?! You can’t HANDLE the truth! ‘Cause when you reach over and put your hand into a pile of goo that was your best friend’s face, you’ll know what to do! Forget it, Marge, it’s Chinatown!”
I like using “purple monkey dishwasher” for any place where I want to put a nonsense phrase. It comes from the episode “The PTA Disbands.” Bart whispers at the protest, “Skinner said the teachers will crack any minute.” By the time it has reached Mrs. Krebapple, it is, “Skinner said the teachers will crack any minute purple monkey dishwasher.” She replies, “Well! We’ll show him, especially for that “purple monkey dishwasher” remark.”
When I am drunk, I also try to use the phrase, “That’s no way to talk to Sir Drinks-a-Lot!” (Of course, I don’t always remember, because I am drunk.) It comes from “Make Room For Lisa,” where Homer comes home drunk from winning a drinking contest sponsored by KBBL. Later in the episode, there is another great quote from Homer, when he is whining about agreeing to spend one Saturday a month with the kids. Bart says, “Oh quit your complaining, it’s only half the work of a divorced dad,” and Homer answers, “But it’s twice the work of a deadbeat dad.”
“What’s a Muppet? Well, it’s not quite a mop, not quite a puppet, but man… [laughs, then pauses] So, to answer you question, I don’t know.” But that’s a little hard to work into conversation.
I also like to use “The rat stands for Obviousness!” and “It was symbolism! He was mad!” when I’m watching slightly pretentious movies, although I usually just say them to myself, and I usually misquote the second one as “It was symbolism! He was really, really angry!”
“Good ol’ rock” is a longstanding favorite among my group of friends.
Also much beloved: “Or what? You’ll release the dogs? Or the bees? Or the dogs with bees in their mouths and when they bark they shoot bees at you?”
A standby among my friends to express reluctance at a new plan is: “I dunno … fish sandwich …”
Whenever a toast is in order, I like to propose (from the episode where Springfield imposes Prohibition) Homer’s: “To alcohol! The cause of — and solution to — all of life’s problems.”
“The frogurt is also cursed.”
Has there ever been a more eminently quotable show in the history of ever? I submit to you there has not. Though The Critic might have come close had it had a longer run…
I also use “____: the cause of and solution to all life’s problems”. particularly at work when someone is proposing some harebrained new scheme.
Also, it is fun to try and work in some variation on Ralph’s “Principal Skinner and my teacher were in the closet making babies and i saw the baby and it winked at me!”. substitute something else for baby and see how many different times you can repeat the word before wrapping up with “and it winked at me”
A favorite among my friends is one of Ralph Wiggum’s laments:
“Me fail English? That’s unpossible!”
To me, that’s always been the perfect expression of disappointment at learning the consequences of your own ineptitude, yet still lacking the self awareness to know that it was your ineptitude that caused your failure.
In other words, Ralph Wiggum speaks for the Bush administration.
I’m also a big fan of Ralph Wiggum-isms, in particular, “I broke my Wookie.”
Context: From the episode where Lisa is competing in the diorama which Ralph wins with his Star Wars action figures in their original packaging.
Use: Anytime something minor upsets your day/life, especially if it is your fault.
Example: You snag your headphones and the cord breaks. Pout and say, “I broke my wookie”.
Here are four that I use on a regular basis:
1) “Your views are intriguing to me, and I wish to subscribe to your newsletter.”
Context: Homer to Bart, after latter’s negative comments on teamwork, sharing, and tolerance.
Usage: Response to a vitriolic rant, often facetious. (S’pose the OTI staff could get some serious mileage out of this one, if they haven’t already.)
2) “I heartily endorse this event or product.”
Context: Krusty The Clown, boilerplate video endorsement, clearly a cold-read.
Usage: Similar to #1
3) “No food, no shelter, no monkey butlers…”
Context: Bart, griping that life on a deserted island is not living up to his fantasy.
Usage: Any listing of complaints and disappointments surely must include “no monkey butlers” for maximum impact.
4) “I’m losing my perspicacity!”
Context: Lisa, panicked upon realizing that she can only think of two synonym’s to a verb.
Usage: I find that it works for any mental lapse, linguistic or otherwise.
..and I’m sure there are dozens more.
Wait, did you call Dickens “high culture?”
Anyway, I’m a big fan of Ralph-isms in general, and use the old standby “that’s where I’m a viking!” with some regularity. I also often find ways to work references to Jeebus into conversation. I’m sure there are others that aren’t coming to me just now.
My bf is notorious for saying, “You are what the French call a Dorkus Malorkus.” I of course can’t resist responding with, “That’s not even French!”
Also, from Treehouse of Horror VI, section “Homer^3”:
(while looking at a pond full of fish):
“Mmmm… unprocessed fish sticks…”
I don’t even watch _The Simpsons_ and have used the “Good ol’ rock” one before.
Wow there are thousands I quote all the time but here are some I can remember:
1) “I call the big one bitey”. From the Monorail episode. My son and I use this all the time but sometimes change it to a much stupider but almost as funny form of “I call the _x_ one _x_’ie”. For example: “I call the small one smallie”.
2) One I use on my son A LOT is : “..remember the advice my dad gave me on my wedding day: ‘Son, if you ever travel back in time, make sure you don’t step on anything because even the tiniest change can alter the future…'”. This is from Treehouse of Horror V. This is good to tell someone whenever they need advice about something complicated.
3) When looking at the ceiling – “Mmmmmm…. Sacrilicous”. From the one where Homer got religion and was praying to a waffle that was stuck on the ceiling
4) “Someone check the men’s room for a Hugh Jass”. This is from a crank call Bart did in one of the 1st few seasons. This fake name is good to use in data entry or contest forms.
5) “No, they wanted somebody good!”. Homer said this to Marge in an early episode when she asked if he had gotten a job. You should sadly say this whenever somebody asks you if you were picked for something.
6) “Yeah, that sounds like something you would say”. This is the answer Bart gave Homer when asked “Didn’t I tell you to watch Maggie”. There is no end to situations when this quote is good to use after somebody asked you whether they told you to do something.
Wait lol I thought of some more that we quote sometimes. It takes 2 people to do these. You can pick your own situations where they should be used:
Ralph : “My button tastes funny”. Focus group guy: “Please refrain from eating the buttons.
The guy that makes Itchy and Scratcy Cartoons to Bart and Lisa: “You just saved Itchy & Scratchy!”. Lawyer (in fast low voice): “Please sign here indicating that you did not save Itchy & Scratchy”
“The Canine Mutiny” (where Bart gets Laddie through a mail-order catalog): When the credit card rep harasses Bart, asking him to consider his “dreams of home ownership, boat ownership and event attendance!”
I remember going to a club with a dear friend of mine a few years ago, and we had both got these shots that were in glow-in-the-dark shot glasses. I took mine first, and as he was taking his, I said over the music “It tastes like Burning”.
Needless to say, the shot nearly made it out my friends nose.
Ah Ralph, I choo-choo-choose you as having some of the most precious repeatable lines.
ps – Good old Rock was constantly brought up in my former social circle…darn Camarilla…..
To anyone that you disagree with
“You must be some kind of crazy person!” Abe Simpson
“Don’t kid yourself. If a cow ever got the chance, he’d eat you and everyone you care about!” Troy McClure
When talking about computers/internet
“They have Internet on computers now?” Homer
When someone stuffs something up
“You tried your best and you failed miserably. The lesson is: never try.” Homer
When talking abou going somewhere you don’t want to go
“I don’t like being outdoors. For one thing, there’s too many fat children.” Mr. Burns
Another outdoorsy one
“Aaah! Natural light! Get it off me! Get it off me! ” Barney
When caught out in a lie
“It takes two to lie. One to lie and one to listen.” Homer
If you bump your head
“I hope I didn’t brain my damage. ” Homer
When you’re do something you’re proud of
“I am so smart. I am so smart. S-M-R-T. I mean S-M-A-R-T.” Homer
Talking about sport/playing sport, etc.
“When you participate in sporting events, it’s not whether you win or lose. It’s how drunk you get.” Homer
When someone won’t shut up
“Who the hell are you? The narrator?” Homer
When you back a losing team/horse
“Go banana!” Ralph