Monday, February 02, 2009

This has to go.

If I never hear this conversational construction, "Blank is the new blank" again it will be amazing. Whoever started this I don't know but this phrase has long since worn out it's usefulness and now people seem to be using it for all manner of circumstances they simply can't find any other way to describe:

Fifty is the new Forty.
Translation: People are looking and behaving in a more youthful manner than they have in the past!

Green is the new Black.
Translation: Environmental concerns seems to be more important to many people than being chic and trendsetting.

Cash is the new money.
Translation: Credit is crap. Cash is what matters.

But I just heard a new one, this one promoting network primetime television shows. Here it is: Monday is the new Thursday. Ahem: umm, no, it's not. Monday will never be the new Thursday and I don't care what programs are on the air.

First of all, Thursday is almost Friday. Monday is nothing more that a version of a bleaker Tuesday, that showed up one day early. It indicates nothing but the start of the week for many of us, and rarely carries with it that lighter, happier feeling you tend to find around a day like Thursday.

Second of all, substituting your own words within a phrase that was passably amusing when used very specifically and occasionally about ten years ago is pathetic. It doesn't make you clever, just derivative.

I know this post sounds kind of depressing but it's the end of a long, difficult day and believe me, not matter what's on television tonight, it will never feel like a Thursday night to me.

Unfortunately, someone reading this may feel the need to convince me otherwise. Phrases like "depressing is the new encouraging" or "bleak is the new bright." Good lord. They are not, okay? Can we all agree that we can stop comparing two disperate things and claiming they are the new whatever?

If not, I have one of my own: saying one thing is like another thing in an effort to be amusing and surprising is the new literary nadir. I like it.


Chris Casey said...

Think Monday, but one day closer to Saturday, when I can sleep in to the late hour of 6 AM instead of 4 Am Hurray!

It could be worse. Could you imagine if your life turned into the movie "Groundhog Day" and that day was always a Monday, like this year?

Chris Casey said...

BTW: Congratulations on using the word "nadir." so few know what it means! and my Word for verification is "farbaluk"
I never saw that in Latin class.

Richard said...

Wow, you do seem grumpy today. Sounds like Renee James is the new Paul Carpenter! Seriously, I whole-heartedly agree about the lack of attention to language. Even the Queen’s English is affected. Have you seen the story about dropping apostrophes from street signs in Birmingham, England?

renee said...

I know - it was a tough day...and although I am typically a bit bleaker than most, that was a bit much even for me.
Bleak may not be the exact word but in a post about language, it wil have to do. Realistic? Honest? Candid? Maybe those work to describe me and my mood as well.
I hadn't seen the link - thank you! Lynn Truss is my hero - and it's sad to see the people who more or less invented the language abandoning apostrophes all over the UK.
Thank you for your comment -

renee said...

Chris - having Groundhog Day be my life - and a never-ending Monday no less - would be beyond my coping abilities.

I like the "Tuesday as one day closer to Saturday" philosophy but I can't really get that feeling until about Wednesday night....

I'm going to try to think of little tiny celebrations I can have every day to get through that Monday and Tuesday drama.

Unfortunately, the first thing that comes to mind are brownies, and in fact they're the second and third things, too. But brownies and glass of cold milk can solve a lot of issues for me. And create more but that's another story.

Thanks for your comments!

renee said...

Nadir doesn't get nearly enough use in my opinion. And it is so relevant to so much of the news these days!

Same thing with 'specious.'

They say so much with so little effort!

Chris Casey said...

Monday is the "nadir" of the work week!

renee said...


Thank god we're almost well past it and on our way to hump day - another literary construction I cannot abide and will never use again.

What's wrong with saying mid-week?

Don't get me started....