Already Over: Jumping the Shark

If you don't instinctively cringe when merely reading the phrase "jumping the shark," then let us welcome you to the Internet, as you're obviously new here. If you actually have the temerity to use this phrase, or worse, speak it aloud, there aren't enough boots in the world to kick your ass hard enough. Trotted out with stultifying predictability to signify affected disenchantment for most any occasion, anyone using the phrase instantly self-identifies as a craven approval-seeker flashing a hipster gang sign long past its prime. Even the occasional innocent protest about the phrase's expiration makes no dent in its hackneyed ascendance in the lingo of would-be wits.

Sure, we've been just as guilty as anyone in the past, but we'll join the chorus calling for this phrase's retirement. Yes, we're well aware of the metatextual implications of declaring "jumping the shark" to be "already over," but what do you know — there is some fruit hanging so low that even we won't stoop to pick it. (At least for now.) So let's mutually agree that anything — direct expression of the same thought, reasoned explanation of root causes, or just simple gutter profanity — is better than this creaking, played, and busted piece of pop culture feces. Just don't say it. Not even in jest. Not with a clever post-post-modern twist. Not spiffed up and remixed with some other meme. Just stop. You're hurting America. And there are many other ways to do that without sounding like such an ass.