Expressions That Have Jumped The Shark

There are a lot of expressions that may seem cute when they first come out but then may eventually become over-used.  Jump the Shark is an example of this type of phrase.  This expression is based on the episode of the TV show Happy Days when Fonzie, while wearing a leather jacket and waterskiing, managed to jumped over a shark.  Its use now indicates something has taken a turn for the worse. The article The True Origin of 10 Weird American Expressions notes the origins of some popular idioms including:

  • Take the Cake
  • Beat around the Bush
  • Pass the Buck
  • In like Flynn
  • Close but no Cigar
  • Go Postal
  • Cut to the Chase
  • Jump the Shark
  • No Dice
  • Gung ho

Every culture has its sayings that may sound funny to someone trying to learn their language.  A Croatian friend once used an expression that translated to “Stop Sitting on Your Ears” to express that someone wasn’t listening. 

For a more complete list explaining the origin of American idioms including Tongue-in-Cheek, Cat Got Your Tongue and more, check out:  English Daily’s list of American Idioms.

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