Monday, February 12, 2007

Cool as colloquialisms allow

Where did the term "cool as shit" come from? Let's face it, excrement isn't really cool in any way. When referring to hooved creatures, there are such cliches as "beware the steaming divot", which indicates that temperature plays a part on the warmer side of cool.

Colloquial speech picked up "cool as shit" and for the life of me, I can't figure out why. It always seemed on par with "you're all that and a bag of chips". Wow, a whole bag of chips? Now that there's a compliment....

So I checked out Wikipedia to see what they had to say on the subject, because I'm that bored. I found 291 references to things Wikipedia had some hand in explaining, but there was no linguistic explanation of the common phrase. So I sought beyond Wikipedia in the internet universe and found 55,400 references to something, someone, or someplace being "cool as shit", but none explained why any of them were in fact "cool as shit". Depressing, really, for an English major to be unable to unearth the linguistic roots of the phrase.

I found cool (!) = Adj. 1. Excellent, great. [Orig. U.S.]2. OK. [Orig. U.S.] at the Dictionary of Slang, but they fell short of addressing "cool as shit". Continuing my search, I checked out 7 possible leads from 4 different searches taking up probably 20 minutes of my time, and then gave up.

But only because I became bored enough to do so. At the end of my search, the whole process became quite literally cool as shit. It was old, cold, and needed to be moved away from.

1 comment:

Apparently Naive said...

hey now, this sounds vaguely familiar...just can't quite place my finger on how though.

more coffee please.

oh, and get your butt up here already, I'm lonely!