Posted: June 9, 2010 in Uncategorized

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Have you noticed the new use of the word “Really” with a question mark. It’s used as a tool to express “I don’t believe you.” or, “You’re really full of shit.” or, “I can’t believe you just did that.”


Have you heard that as a one word declarative stating that the situation is uncomfortable? It is simply state when, well, something awkward occurs.

Epic Fail.

The use of “Epic” as an adjective combined with the the IT term of “Fail” make this a two-word expression that can somehow be an understatement or overstatement at the same time.

awkward, huh?

I write for magazines geared toward twenty-somethings and I try to work these terms in. Honestly. I’m pushing fifty and feel pretty goof doing it.

Should I?

Are these expressions the verbal equivalent of the high-five? The once hip no incredibly goofy way to congratulate a person?

Is it an axiom that if white middle class fifty year-olds are using an expression then, by definition, it can’t possibly be hip?

Am I making sense?

Are you getting it?





Epic Fail!

  1. Jen Forbus says:

    You should take a linguistics class some time. It’s fascinating to look at how language lives and breathes. Changes, evolves…all that stuff.

    And subsets of a culture are always developing words, terms, phrases to distinguish and define themselves. Sometimes those stick around and sneak into the general vocabulary and sometimes they just die out. It’s certainly not a new concept.

    In the movie IN THE LINE OF FIRE Clint Eastwood’s older character says to Dylan McDermott’s younger character, “Cockamamie, there’s a word your generation doesn’t use anymore. You should use it more.”

    If you want to be the typical, resistant to change, this-is-the-way-it-has-to-be old man then don’t write for the 20-something magazine! Otherwise, go with the flow and everything will be groovy, man.

  2. Graham says:

    “Really?” is still pretty useful, but “epic fail” is getting stale. This cartoon was published at least a couple of years ago:

    (FYI, in computing an “epoch” is the range of dates than can be accessed by a particular date-time data type. But I’ve said too much already.)

  3. V-Dog says:

    I’m still trying to fight off ‘epic fail,’ along with ‘FML,’ or F*** My Life. It’s like when you realize you threw out your movie ticket before you made it to the movie-ticket-tearer-person, you might say FML.

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