Popular catch-phrases are funny human phenomena. In Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds Charles Mackay mentions several that suddenly rose to popularity in Elizabethan times and, as suddenly, faded out: "What a shocking bad hat!", "Flare up!", "Does your mother know you're out?", etc. In recent decades television and movies have been good vectors for such infectious memes as "Just put your lips together and blow", "Would you believe?", and "I'll be back".

The latest fad around our house is a koan that has been bopping around the video game world for several years now: All your base are belong to us. This mystical utterance, for those who haven't encountered it, first appeared in a port of "Zero Wing" to the Sega Genesis, as part of a bad translation into English of the story that introduces the game. Since then the phrase has spread to countless web pages, posters, and animations. And now, it punctuates our dinner table conversation ....

TopicSociety - TopicHumor - TopicPersonalHistory - TopicRecreation - 2002-08-28

(correlates: Metabo versus The Media, OnSingularities, DeliberateOpinion, ...)