Going Bananas

Column of May 18, 2018

Cecil completely ignored the most obvious source of the phrase “going bananas”: apes going crazy for bananas. I don’t have a cite but it’s just common sense.

The only thing we know for certain about etymology is that “common sense” has little to do with word history. Tracing a term’s history in actual usage is all we can go by.

But you may be right in a roundabout way. Grammaristhas this to say:

Other word sites give similar answers, but it’s notable that none of them can offer anything more than a guess. The actual evolution of the phrase remains unknown.

Here’s a link to the original column if you want to play along at home.