Oh-My-God Revisited

Here we are, two years later, and it’s hard to believe but the use of Oh My God has become even greater.  It was largely a pervasive women’s phrase when I first blogged about it but it has now penetrated the vernacular to the point of being memetic, even among some men, usually those looking to expose their tender side.

Once upon a time I would have used the Urban Dictionary’s version of describing this hackneyed phrase to a foreigner curious about use of the English langauge: “An explanation of shock and surprise used by those who are shocked and surprised by almost everything and insert it into conversations whenever possible”.  Kind of what you’d expect from a girl who wouldn’t know how or when to use an apostrophe. Other examples of colloquial uses of the phrase by the UD make it sound like a vapid conversation space-filler, yet I know some very bright and articulate people who have embraced the phrase with alacrity.  I’ve moved beyond  annoyance with hearing the phrase used as pre-ambulating linguistic filler.  I give!  Uncle!  It’s not going away any time soon.

Please don’t think of me as elitist.  I’ve come to enjoy hearing the OMG phrase (okay, more like being amused and entertained by its use).  If not a meme, it’s a bit of a cultural attractor – in the sense that Dan Sperber describes how we model behavior.  Have you considered what expression people will use when “Oh My God” is eventually phased out, as it will be?  Holy Connoli just doesn’t have the same impact factor.

About Leonard J. Press, O.D., FAAO, FCOVD

Developmental Optometry is my passion as well as occupation. Blogging allows me to share thoughts in a unique visual style.
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5 Responses to Oh-My-God Revisited

  1. doctuhdon says:

    What a titty witty post, Len Press ! I still think “oy vey” will outlast OMG !

  2. I’ll just die if “oy vey” morphs into “oy vey guht” (OVG!). Speaking of titty witty, had dinner with the grandkinderlach at the Pizza Shop in Lakewood last night J-II (wearing my Lakewood Blue Claws hat and flip-flops, of course) and did a double take at the ad for IMPLANTS on the food trays – then looked again to notice the ad was from a dentist. Amazing how being at the beach all day frames perception.

    • Daniel Wohlgelernter says:

      Very funny. You should suggest that scene to Larry David; he’d like the implants double entendre.

  3. Thanks for the thought. I’ve tried to reach out to Larry, but he told me to stick with my day job. >)

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