Thankfully, it’s been a while since I’ve heard it, but someow, it seems to have made a comeback. No, thankfully I’m not referring t the “Macarena,” an evil, inescapable entity all on its own. I’m talking about the phrase “I just threw up in my mouth.” Around fifteen years ago, it was everywhere. Sometimes, there’d be an “a little bit” tacked on to the end, but everyone who said it clearly thought they were the first to put these words together, or that no one had ever heard them before.
The first time I remember hearing it was in an old SNL sketch. Maya Rudolph, genius comedienne, was doing a parody of the infamous “Diana Ross drunk-driving” incident, which made the cover of every tabloid at the time. Stumbling out of her car, Maya slurs the line to the police officer who’d pulled her over. I laughed so hard, I had tears streaming down my face. Not only was the line funny at the time, but it was given by a veteran comedic actress who knew exactly how it should be delivered. I wouldn’t be surprised if she wrote the line herself.
For a while, the line was everywhere. I’d hear on sitcoms, reality shows, talk shows, in movies... And just as quickly as it arose, it vanished. I breathed a heavy sigh of relief and lived peacefully for several years. But...just like a herpes outbreak...it’s back. Recently, I’ve been hearing it in the usual places: on TV, the radio, social media... I overheard Dr. Phil, everyone’s favorite narcissistic jackhole, use it not 48 hours ago.
What baffles me more than the line’s overuse, even more than its return, occurs when the line in spoken in front of an audience. This can be an audience of two or an audience of a thousand. Not only do people laugh like they’ve never heard anything so funny, they laugh like they’ve never heard it at all. I feel like Elaine Benes in the classic episode of Seinfeld, when it becomes a fad to eat cookies, candy, and general hand foods with a silverware. She stands up in the middle of Monk’s and bellows, “What is wrong with all you people?! Have you all gone mad?!”
Well? Have you??