Anyone Else Have "Word Triggers"?

Woohoo! Lunchtime! Time for me and a coworker buddy to go do a lap around our work campus. I go over to his desk, but hmmm…he’s not there. I ask around.

“Oh, he had to leave…his wife called, and you know how they have that big glass dining room table?”


“Well, his wife dropped something on it or something, and it got shattered.”

“Shadoobie. Wow…that sucks…that was a really nice table, too.”

“Yeah, I know. Must’ve made a hell of…wait. Did you just say ‘shadoobie’?”

“Oh…errr…yeah, I guess I did.”


“Well…you said ‘shattered’, and ‘shadoobie’ must follow. It’s…errrr…sort of the law of my brain.”

:: cue odd looks all around ::

I’m going to guess I’m not the only one with something like this. What’re your “trigger words”…words that must be followed up by another word or phrase – even if you don’t actually vocalize them, your brain still has to complete the phrase?

Yes and “shattered” (sha-doobie) is the main one.

i have a friend that does this all the time. shattered/shadoobie isn’t one of them, but since he’s a music buff i’m sure if i introduced it subtely it’d stick. i’ll try it.

“Shadoobie”? Is that what Mick Jagger is singing?

That’s what I’ve always heard it as.

Rectum -> Damn near killed 'im.

You know what? -> Chicken butt.

Honestly?? -> No, lie to me.

I discovered I have a few just the other day. I was playing some presidential quiz game, and every time I saw/read, say, “Eisenhower,” my brain would immediately follow it up with “vaccine.” After thinking about it, nearly all the ‘word triggers’ I have are from “We Didn’t Start the Fire.”

Eisenhower ==> Vaccine
Harry Truman ==> Doris Day
Joe McCarthy ==> Richard Nixon
Hula Hoops ==> Castro
North Korea ==> South Korea ==> Marilyn Monroe (a double trigger!)

…and so on.
Thanks. Now that I’m consciously aware of it, it’s gonna bug me that much more. Great.

For reasons not known to me, every time I encounter the name of the anti-heartburn drug Prilosec, I immediately think of the actor Delroy Lindo. WTF? Sometimes it’s as if the pointers in the mind that lead from one place to another have gotten scrambled.

I have a compulsion to follow “okay” with “wuz wuz.” I can avoid saying it most of the time, but I’m always thinking it.

There was some americanized Godzilla movie (Godzilla vs. Megalon, I believe) in which Godzilla and Anguiras were wading through the ocean. A strange scratching-record sound starts up, and then Godzilla says, in English, “Hey, Anguiras, there’s some trouble up ahead.” And Anguiras says “Okay.” And throughout, there’s the scratchy record sound, which I assume is supposed to indicate that the kaiju aren’t actually speaking English. “Wuz wuz” is my feeble imitation of this sound.

I also mentally follow “Anyway” with “meanwhile, in Europe whoosh ™” The “anyway, meanwhile in Europe” is from Connections, and the rest is just in-joke layered upon in-joke.

“Surely” followed up with “and don’t call me Shirley” has to be one of the stalest triggers in the box, right? Yet I think it every time I hear “surely.”

Knock, knock…

This happens to me all the time–a word or phrase will trigger a song. For example, the mention of any of the actors or films mentioned in the song at the beginning of Rocky Horror will set me off on that.

If I’m lucky, I can trace the song back to whatever it was I heard or read that triggered it. Other times, I’ll just start singing something I haven’t thought of in years and wonder where the heck that came from. There is something in my kitchen right now that makes me want to sing “Town Without Pity,” and I still haven’t figured out what it is (a label on something in the fridge?).

Who you gonna call?

Ooo…same here. For instance, every time I read this thread title, my brain immediately followed it up with BOOM!!

“Meanwhile…” ==> “…back at the ranch.”

“Look…” ==> “…a teradactyl!” (If you remember Little Caesar’s commercials, you understand.)

“Well…” ==> “…that’s a deep subject.” (My big brother inflicted that on me mercilessly, and I’ll never forgive him for it.)

I’m sure I’ll think of more as the day goes on.

When I click on “In My Humble Opinion” I often start singing “In My Simple Humble Neighborhood” by Carole King.

It’s Friday, It’s five o’clock -> Crackerjack!

I don’t know if this counts, but I can’t say the name Luther without over-pronouncing it like Ned Beatty in Superman - “Loo-thor.”

You know, Hal, I’m not sure I would have even noticed you saying “Shadoobie.” It just follows “shattered” so naturally.

Guess what? => “Monkey Butt”

Like the “shadoobie” thing, if someone says “5 miles long,” I want to go, “doo dah, doo dah.” Camptown Races. You know…

I had a friend in college who, whenever you asked what time it was, he’d say, “Time to die!” I have an nearly irresistible urge to say that whenever someone asks me what time it is. I can usually prevent myself from blurting it out in inappropriate company.

Then there’s the classic, whenever anyone says “shave and a haircut,” to yell out, “TWO BITS!” But I can rarely hold back when that happens.