[Ads-l] Query about the origin of a meme

Ben Zimmer bgzimmer at GMAIL.COM
Sat May 2 01:51:38 UTC 2015

We discussed this a couple of years ago, and I cited an SNL example
from Amy Poehler back in 2004 (though it's not quite canonical: "said
no one" without the "ever").


Britney Spears is recording a rap song about the recent controversies
in her life. "I can't wait to hear that!" said no one.

On Fri, May 1, 2015 at 9:34 PM, Laurence Horn wrote:
> Thanks, Garson.  So it peaked in 2013.  No mention of non-internet usage
> like the "Weekend Update" occurrences I mentioned, but I guess even SNL
> runs a distant second in the era of the twitterverse.  In any case,
> between retro-NOT, sarcastic "I don't think", and now "said no one
> ever", there seems to be both a need and a short shelf-life for these
> retroactive cancellation devices.
>> On May 1, 2015, at 9:05 PM, ADSGarson O'Toole wrote:
>> Here is a link to an interesting analysis:
>> Website: Know Your Meme
>> Article title: ...Said No One Ever
>> Article subtitle: Part of a series on Internet Slang.
>> On Fri, May 1, 2015 at 7:59 PM, Laurence Horn wrote:
>>> ...namely, "...said no one ever" (or variants, e.g. "...said nobody
>>> ever").  It strikes me as similar to at least one use of the 90s-ism
>>> (yes, as Jon and Jesse showed us, it's really an *18*90s-ism) "Not!", or
>>> "retro-NOT" as I like to call it.  Here's urbandictionary's entry:
>>> I first noticed it on SNL's Weekend Update, possibly from Cecily Strong,
>>> but no doubt (like "...NOT", which wasn't invented on SNL. either by
>>> Wayne's World in the early 90s or by Steve Martin in the 1978 Nerds
>>> Science Fair routine) it was already lurking, maybe in the twitter
>>> sphere.

The American Dialect Society - http://www.americandialect.org

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