"going bananas"

Discussion in 'Linguistics' started by Michael, May 8, 2008.

  1. Michael 歌舞伎 Valued Senior Member

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    Why "going bananas" aka going crazy? Where did that come from? I mean bananas?

    I was thinking maybe it was in reference to monkeys caged a zoo. I'm sure they go ape-shit over bananas...
     
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  3. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    This is the only website I can find that gives an etymology and it agrees with your assumption.

    As for "ape-shit," we used to just say "go ape." In the 1960s when American culture loosened up, people added "shit" to everything just because they could get away with it, e.g. "dumb-shit." We wore out the shock value of shit so now they're starting over with "fuck," e.g. "dumb-fuck." English has a very small number of swear words compared to many languages, so I wonder what they'll do when they run out?

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  5. Michael 歌舞伎 Valued Senior Member

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    Haaha good point. Maybe we'll go back to golly-gee???

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  7. Nesm Registered Senior Member

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    It's not right to assume that all monkeys would go crazy for a banana. As a relative of one, I'm quite offended. Instead, I'd like to suggest a new, monkey-free [*] & banana packed origin to the phrase: 'going bananas'.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Of90cKxSeuw


    [*]Debatable
     
  8. cosmictraveler Be kind to yourself always. Valued Senior Member

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    Here's the best answer I found...

    Everybody knows what "going bananas" means: you've just turned plain cuckoo. But what are the origins of the phrase? Strangely, even the most authoritative source on Anglo etymology, The Oxford English Dictionary, isn't sure. The first known usage of the term has been credited to a 1968 academic publication, which noted that Kentucky college students were saying it.


    http://discovolonte.typepad.com/discovolonte/2007/12/the-mystery-of.html#more
     
  9. Michael 歌舞伎 Valued Senior Member

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    Ahhhhh Hahahahaha.......

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  10. Michael 歌舞伎 Valued Senior Member

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    Wow the 1957 reference is interesting. I wonder if I could make up some jargon?

    Also, when we were kids, people were talking about how smoking banana's could make you high (or so I think I remember??). Anyway, we didn't have any banana's so we tried to smoke some corn-silk. HaaaHaaa - needless to say it didn't work!!
     
  11. scorpius a realist Valued Senior Member

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  12. Michael 歌舞伎 Valued Senior Member

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    That's cool

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    I can't believe YouTube has soooo much stuff.....
     
  13. darini Registered Senior Member

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    So, what we watch in Hollywood movies must be 50% of the swear words said by Anglophones? ;-)

    cheers
     
  14. Asguard Kiss my dark side Valued Senior Member

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  15. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    No, I think they cover 100% of them, sometimes all in the same movie. Perhaps 110%, I wouldn't be surprised if Hollywood writers are the source of new ones. In 1972 George Carlin listed the "seven dirty words" that were forbidden on TV and although it's a little imprecise in order to fit the meter of his chanting delivery, it's surprisingly complete and hasn't expanded since then. When you consider that Hugo Chávez could call George Bush a pendejo (pubic hair) and get titillated nods of acknowledgment from a majority of the people in the Western Hemisphere including several U.S. states, we anglophones start to feel very constrained by our tiny vocabulary of dirty words.
     
  16. visceral_instinct Monkey see, monkey denigrate Valued Senior Member

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    Yeah English is impoverished where swearing is concerned. Other languages have things like Phai-sha-sa-mkhan (Tibetan: Eater of father's flesh) and lo'fasz a seggedbe (Hungarian: a horse's dick up your ass) while we have to make do with shit, fuck, cunt, bollocks and asshole...
     
  17. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    We don't even have "bollocks," whatever those are.
     
  18. StrangerInAStrangeLand SubQuantum Mechanic Valued Senior Member

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    Bollocks -
    1. testicles.
    • 2. used to express contempt, annoyance, or defiance.


    <>
     
  19. sideshowbob Sorry, wrong number. Valued Senior Member

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    Do cuckoos like bananas?
     
  20. DaveC426913 Valued Senior Member

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    I know fruit flies like a banana.
    And time flies like an arrow.
     

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