13 Painfully Outdated Phrases We All Still Use

Why are we still saying these things?


“Hang up the phone.”

Just what exactly are you hanging it on? See also: “Dial the number.”




“Roll down the window.”

Windows are not pantlegs, and, chances are, it’s been a few decades since your car had one of these.




“Close, but no cigar.”

This saying refers to the practice of giving cigars as prizes at carnivals in the US during the 19th century. Today we just say “#fail.”




You sound “like a broken record.”

Yesterday’s scratched record is today’s buffering Spotify app.




You look like you’ve “been through the wringer.”

These days we only have to push a button and I STILL hate doing laundry. Manually feeding it through a pasta maker that may or may not rip your fingers off? Fuggedaboutit.




“Dropping a dime” on someone.

There was a time when the only way to make a phone call outside your house was to insert 10 cents into a machine like this. Horrifying, I know.




“Hold your horses.”

A leftover from the days when “horsepower” actually referred to the number of horses hitched to your wagon.




I need to “blow off some steam.”

This is a relic from the time when steam engines ruled the world. Now it’s just an excuse for why you’re getting drunk on a Tuesday. See also: “full-steam ahead” and “running out of steam.”




Did you “tape it”?

From the days when video cameras were bigger than a breadbox and a movie was something you had to “rewind.”




I just need your “John Hancock” on this form.

To explain this one, you have go all the way back to a time before America was a country (and when people still wrote in cursive).




Don’t “telegraph your punches.”

What the hell is a telegraph and why would you punch someone with it?!




“Carbon copy.”

You probably know this as a term for sending the same email to multiple people, but it originated in the days before we had copy machines. Just remember to press hard.




“See you on the flip side.”

The flip side of what? Oh a record. Wait, what?



4 replies on “13 Painfully Outdated Phrases We All Still Use”

Dropping a dime on someone was more than just calling them. It was making a call, purposefully from an outside phone, to “rat them out”.

Here’s another outdated line: ” ’til death do us part”.

I almost feel like “LOL” could be added to this list…. when was the last time you truly laughed out loud when typing it?

@smacked, I may be in the minority but I actually laugh out loud then write/type the LOL frequently.
But then, I find a lot of things pretty funny.

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