< Back


My family has this weird habit of taking things that we hear people say and turning them into catch phrases that we use in random, unrelated situations. Maybe you have no idea what I mean. Well, here are two of my personal favorites:

"Aww man, someone busted in our car again!"

This was first uttered by a man in the parking lot of the Monroeville Mall sometime in the early 90s. While waiting by the curb for my parents to pick me up, I noticed a car parked nearby. It drew my attention because 3/4 of the car's windows were covered with some sort of ratty plastic tarp, most of which was flapping wildly in the winter wind. Soon after, the aforementioned man came running out of the mall and up to his car yelling said phrase with such great feeling and emphasis that I had to wonder, "again"? Why are people repeatedly "busting" into your car? Granted, it's not that hard with the whole tarp thing going on, but your car is not that nice, buddy. Wait, that's an understatement; it's really crappy. What are people hoping to find in it that's worth stealing?

I'll never know, but his phrase has lived on for the past twenty years as a way for members of my family to show utter disappointment. For instance, Grandma Betty gave you a 2XL LeeAnn Rimes t-shirt for your 11th birthday when you weighed 80 pounds and hated country music? The perfect response would be: "Aww man, someone busted in my car again!"

"Now that is what scars me!"

One summer while I was in college, I worked with a Filipino woman who was not a native English speaker and who had a pretty strong accent. As a result, she would sometimes mispronounced things or confused words. One afternoon while on break, someone was talking about some terrible thing on the news, when she broke out with this sentence. I think what she really meant to say was, "Now that is what SCARES me," but the result was the most perfect malapropism. I had to share it with my family, who has since used it hundreds of times to express shock, fear, or apprehension. It's a bonus if spoken with an accent.

Global warming? Giant Eagle no longer carrying Turkey Hill Mint Choc-o-Chip ice cream? "Now that is what scars me!"

Prose by

Gretchen Schroeder
Mini Bio
I'm a mom, wife, teacher, and user of weird phrases that other people originated.
Web Presence

Picture by

The Beckoning of Lovely
Chicago's Millennium Park
Mini Bio
I dedicate Pantone #396 to the yellow umbrella that brought so much joy and so many wonderful people into my life. xo
Web Presence