Catch-Phrases II: The Revenge

More magnetic maxims to guide you through existence, and beyond. Care Bear stare!
August 05, 2006
These days heading out the door unarmed with an ingenius catch-phrase is like leaving the house stark naked.

Whether you're going to the dentist or a job interview, the following list will make sure you're packin' cunning caps and explosive wit grenades. The in-crowd won't know what hit 'em.

1.) "Don't be ridiculous," and "I have...a plan."

How we got it: If the names Larry Appleton and Balki Bartokomus mean nothing to you then you need to seriously examine your purpose for getting up in the morning. Just one glimpse of an episode from Perfect Strangers will have you performing the Dance of Joy, not to mention make you aware of two phrases that always come in handy during those sticky situations.

Best Used: You'll find it advantegeous to use these two together; especially when your boss asks if you're the one responsible for losing the Spencer account, and just what you plan to do to make up for it. "Don't be ridiculous" will slip enough doubt into your boss's mind while "I have...a plan" (with comedic pause to account for the ellipsis marks) will ensure him you've got, well ...a "plan."

2.) "Care Bear stare!"

How we got it: From the subversive psyhodelic children's show Care Bears that spawned several movies, a line of plush animals, and enough squishy goodness to melt even Saddam Hussein's heart.

Best Used: When confronting the schoolyard bully, of course. When's the last time "Go ahead, make my day" did diddly-squat for you? A quality "Care Bear stare!" accompanied with dramatic glare will surely guilt your menace into submission. Why use fists when you've got Sunshine Bear and the gang on your side?

3.) "Bionics on!"

How we got it: From a diversified team of biomechanically engineered superheroes known aptly as the Bionic Six. If you think there are any similarities between them and the X-Men, you're just dead wrong, pal.

Best Used: Right before a hot date or before stepping up to the plate. In either situation, "Bionics on!" will have you rounding the bases faster than an adrenaline-enhanced Barry Bonds.

4.) "The power is yours!"

How we got it: Let it never be said the 80's and early 90's was not a span of years brimming with enough pump-up phrases to give granny a heart attack. This gem comes from the famous non-Superman related green-haired hero known as Captain Planet.
Best Used: Have a classmate down in the dumps? Maybe that big red "F" on his geometry quiz has given him a bad case of the long face. "The power is yours!" will surely break through any storm cloud hovering over his head like a bolt of lightning. Be sure to repeat it loud and clear from across the classroom right before he takes the next quiz. Never mind the potential embarassment, you don't want to risk him losing any confidence right when it counts.

5.) "Knowing is half the battle."

How we got it: It's widespread knowledge this important catch-phrase originated somewhere in the Bible. It's also widespread knowledge that if something is printed on a t-shirt, it can be taken as gospel. This phrase gained popularity mostly because of G.I. Joe: A Real American Hero with its always-useful lesson of the day following each episode.

Best Used: At the end of a college lecture, gun safety course, or seat-belt safety lecture on board an airplane.

Note: You don't necessarily have to be the one imparting the actual knowledge. However, standing up, raising an index finger to announce "Knowing is half the battle" to your class or the audience is sure to drive home whatever point the speaker was making.

6.) "Ha! I kill me!"

How we got it: Nothing this hilarious could possibly spring from the mind of an earthling. This classic saying comes straight from the stars via fuzzy and friendly extraterrestrial ALF.

Best Used: As the best bad-joke recovery phrase known to man. So what if your one about the cow and the washing machine left the crowd with puzzled looks. "Ha! I kill me!" will have them rolling in the aisles while you ponder your next punchline.

7.) "Make it so."

How we got it: From the authoritative command of Captain Jean-Luc Picard on Star Trek: The Next Generation. Arguably the Mustang of the whole Star Trek franchise.

Best Used: When you need to show who's boss in any situation. Whether it's your mom asking you if you'd care for a cheese sandwich, or your friend asking if he can change the TV channel for you, "Make it so," will let them know to get moving, post-haste.

There are a thousand useful mottos out there that can be applied in all capacities. It is your job as a bona-fide retro junkie to seek them out wherever they may be found. Go forth, I implore thee, and spread the good news--a catch-phrase in every pot, a "party time, excellent" and "cowabunga" for everyone.

This may be the final installment in this catch-phrase extravaganza. But who knows, I may be back...

When not pondering the mysteries of the universe, Dean Brooks can be found updating his webpage at:, and can be reached for comment at: [email protected].
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