Recently, we have been hearing the term ”strong’ as a suffix for everything involved in adversity. Colorado had the terrible floods, and at the benefit concert, we were ‘ColoradoStrong‘. After the Boston bombings, the terrorized but resilient people of Boston were now Boston Strong. You get the idea. I am not sure if these terms are one big long word, or two smaller words. I guess I am not ‘Grammar Strong’. Remember where this suffix comes from? It was Lance Armstrong, who started his charity – LiveStrong. It’s a great story. Dude defeated friggin brain cancer to become the best athlete of our generation.
On the other side of the spectrum, we have ‘gate’. I not a fan of this one, because it (like above) is just too easily applied. Anything even a little scandal-ish becomes ‘gate’. Lono started jamming words together in that paragraph above. It’s Grammar-Gate. We got to hear this one trotted out with the Chris Christie scandal. They are calling it Bridge-gate. Do you know what happened? it’s pretty funny. The Gov of New Jersey, Chris Christie, had a tiff with a mayor across the water. So, to be a dick, he shut down the bridge to that city under the guise of construction. Effectively, Christie just closed that whole city… just because he could.
Here is a better take on it from last night’s Fallon. He did another classic and brilliant parody of Springsteen’s Born to Run about Bridgegate. Oh, and he did it with Bruce Springsteen. You know Bruce, he is mister New Jersey. When Bruce Springsteen starts publicly mocking the head of New Jersey… that is bad for Christie. Especially since Christie is publicly a very big Springsteen fan. Well…. was anyway.
So, why does anyone care? Well, because Christie is going to run for President next year. This single issue may be enough to shut the whole thing down. So, he gets the ‘gate’ prefix. I remember Bill Clinton had some scandals. There was the Whitewater investigation. The prosecutor, a total dick by the name of Kenn Starr, spent nearly a billion dollars and turned up nothing. NOTHING. They called it ‘Whitewater-gate‘. They should have called it ‘Starrgate’
So… why do I write about this? Besides the fact that I want the lazy ass media to stop using those cop out phrases, there is something larger at work here. See, one of those scandals refers to a once beloved public figure who disgraced himself after it was revealed he spent YEARS and MILLIONS lying and covering up his dirty deeds. What’s worse? He spent all his time screwing anyone who challenged him or called him out. You did not cross this guy, ever. He will fuck you up! Hence why the suffix has survived so long and so far.
Wait, which scandal was I talking about again? See what I did there? Shouldn’t the suffix ‘strong’ come to represent the same tawdry douchebaggery that ‘gate’ does? What do we call the Lance Armstrong scandal. Strong gate? Nope. They are calling it ‘showergate‘. Wtf? I think if we called it ‘strong-gate’ the terms would cancel each other out. Worse, it would cause a linguistic implosion the likes of which only the Swiss know over at the Hadron Super Collider. You don’t want to be responsible for that.
Me? Me, I ain’t scared of you! I’m Lono-Strong®. No… wait… I’m GateStrong ® My spell check, on the other hand, just shit itself.