Ask A Genius 214 – Words in Circulation
Scott Douglas Jacobsen & Rick Rosner
June 30, 2017
[Beginning of recorded material]
Rick Rosner: We are sending more letter type things to each other than people have ever done before in history by some crazy wide margin. So, you’d expect words to get into circulation and then get used up at a faster rate than previous eras.
The 50s and 60s had their words. SNAFU, it was a big WWII word. There is situation normal all fucked up. I don’t know if people in the army went around saying it all of the time. In the 60s, they had their cliches that were or things that were allegedly said.
In the 50s, there was a big focus on advertising, and it was allegedly said. it was, for the same reasons that Mad Men was popular, it epitomized the time. For the first time, America was a thoroughly prosperous consumer culture.
One of the cliches that you could put in the mouth of an ad guy is “running up the flag pole to salute.” There was the man in the grey flannel suit, or the organization guy. The guy, for the first time, who had – you had a greater number of people working for organizations, business organizations, than at any other time.
The man in the grey flannel suit is just a cognitive business machine. A guy who wears a suit to work and is one of a zillion drones who is doing mid-management stuff. It was the same culture to show a 100 by 100 room.
It would show many different secretaries each at their own desk.
[End of recorded material]
American Television Writer
Scott Douglas Jacobsen
Editor-in-Chief, In-Sight Publishing
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