Wednesday, January 20, 2010

It's Just so Freakin' A

I was talking with friends at work about how 20% of the American public doesn’t believe that we actually went to the moon.

Yeah, I’m serious, there’s people out there that actually believe the whole thing was a conspiracy by NASA and the US govt. Another friend said he met a guy once who swore that aliens have taken over every level of our government. My friend asked, “Is there any data to back that up?” The guy responded, “It’s out there, man,” and left it at that. Not to be out-done, I recounted a time I hired a friend of a friend to paint my house. I mentioned The Da Vinci Code, because it had just come out in the stores, and I and asked him what he thought. Big mistake. He spent the next three hours lecturing me about how the new world order had taken over the planet and the Illuminati were the real ones running the show.

That got my friends and me wondering. When someone comes up to you blurting something totally asinine, what do you say?

You can try to argue and convince the person that they’re wrong, but have you ever gotten anywhere that way? I haven’t. You can’t win an argument with people who can’t think critically. Personally, I live by the maxim that you can’t waste your life educating fools—there’s too many of them. So, what’s the best response? I think I have the perfect one.

Freakin’ A!

Rarely in life are the answers so simple. Freakin’ A! What does it mean? Well, it really depends on what the listener wants to hear—and that’s the sheer beauty of it. It can mean anything. I got one of my friends to try it out. He went home, and for the past two days he evaded every question he didn’t want to answer by spouting, “freakin’ A!” It worked pretty well.

“Hey, babe. Let’s go visit the art gallery this weekend. There’s a new exhibit of post neo-modern expressionistic bi-cubism. Supposed to be out of this world!”

“Freakin’ A!”


Another very long pause.

(a couple days later, that weekend)

“So, are you ready to go?”

“Go where?”

“To the art gallery, like you promised.”

“Man, you heard it all wrong. I never said that.”

I did a Google search to see if anyone knows exactly what this phrase is supposed to mean. No one’s got a clue. It appears in print as early as the 1930s, but it’s probably a lot older than that. What people do agree upon is that it can mean literally anything, depending on the emotion you put into it. Let’s have a few examples to illustrate. Pretend a friend says something to you, and you want to make some kind of sympathetic response:
  1. Anger: Dude, that mechanic charged me $450 for a stupid break-job. Freakin’ A!

  2. Surprise: Check it out, I just won $20 playing power-ball. Freakin’ A!

  3. Elation: Man, the Wildcats just won the eastern division playoffs! (high five) Freakin’ A!

  4. Disappointment: Sorry, sweety, I had to cancel our tickets to the opera tonight. Boss says I gotta work late. Freakin’ A!

  5. Acknowledgement: Hey, I’m gonna bail and catch an early weekend. Freakin’ A!

  6. Swearing: $@$#-ing %$#@!-er!!! $#^ #@*$ it!!! Freakin’ A!

The politicians could sure use this. Picture Bill Clinton having to get up and address the nation over the Monica Lewinski scandal. He’s standing there, he looks straight into the camera and shakes his finger. “Freakin’ A!” The public would love it. They’d be saying to themselves. “Man, we’ve all been there. I know where he’s coming from!”

Bush, widely known for sticking his foot in his mouth, could have gotten out of so many tight spots. All he had to do was toss his hands in the air and say, “Freakin’ A!” The reporters would be in heaven. “The president, when asked today in a Whitehouse press conference about the missing WMDs replied, quote, freakin’ A, un-quote. And you know what, he’s right. Those Iraqis had it coming!”

So let’s role-play for a bit. Pretend I’m anyone. I come to you with something you feel needs a response because you’re trying to be polite, or I’m trying to back you into a corner and you want to remain non-commital. At the end of each sentence, just say to yourself, “Freakin’ A!”

  1. Dude, I swear aliens have taken over our government.

  2. Hey, can you come over this weekend and help me hang sheet-rock?

  3. Bush lied to us, man. He, Bin-laden, and the Saudis were all in it together when 9/11 went down.

  4. Son, did you mow the lawn like I asked you to?

  5. Obama can’t be our president, he’s not even American.

  6. Honey, does this dress make me look fat?

  7. Don’t buy anything from China. They’ve taken over the new world order.

  8. Honey, how do you like my new vegan recipe? It’s tofu artichoke eggplant surprise.

  9. The earth is really flat. All that stuff about the space shuttle and satellites in outer space is just Hollywood bullcrap.

  10. Gibbons, I need you to come in this Sunday and work on those TPS reports.

As a man, how often have I craved the perfect response when words failed me? How often have I been accused of not being communicative? What’s to communicate? What do I need to say? Just two simple words.

Freakin’ A.

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