The first time I read it online I thought “hey, that’s kind of clever.” The second and third times it seemed both clever and in-jokey. I laughed because it felt good to be part of the crowd that was using this clever new turn of phrase. Turn of word? Can it be a phrase if it’s just a word?
Then one night as we were watching TV my erstwhile roommate shouted out “ooooh FAIL. EPIC FAIL!” in reaction to something onscreen. And I realised then that any cordial relationship I had with “Fail” as a disclaimer for something odd or disturbing was over. Over and dead.
In my house we have a rule about watching TV. You discuss whatever you’re watching. In detail. It’s annoying to outsiders because it’s sort of like a cross between MST3K and the McNeil-Lehrer report. Half goofy, half pretentious. All designed to make you feel like you aren’t rotting your brain–nosiree! You are discussing. But when Roommate had no greater input than “Ooooo, Fail!” I realised that I was done with it.
“Fail” when uttered aloud sounds sort of like something you’d hear out of a pained goat or spoiled toddler. It’s not constructive, it’s not informative. It’s not funny in that caustic sharpwitted way that someone like Sarcastro has. It’s just the newest version of Nelson’s “Ha HA!!!” with an extra dose of cruelty. The days of it being any sort of funny were gone like six months ago.
And since it is “Feel Good Friday” I have decided to
embed link to a video. This video WARNING: LINK NSFW makes me feel good when I watch it because I imagine myself performing this little song and dance on every person who utters “fail” in my presence from here on out.
“Is that as good for you as it was for me? Hey, what’s goin’ on? Do you hear that?“