Punching The Jukebox

A few weeks ago, Susannah Fox (@SusannahFox) tweeted out the following:

For those of you who aren’t familiar with the “jump the shark” reference, I’ll let Wikipedia explain.

Jumping the shark is an idiom created by Jon Hein that is used to describe the moment in the evolution of a television show when it begins a decline in quality that is beyond recovery. The phrase is also used to refer to a particular scene, episode or aspect of a show in which the writers use some type of “gimmick” in a desperate attempt to keep viewers’ interest.

Indeed, the phrase is in reference to a particular 1977 episode of Happy Days in which Fonzie (nee: The Fonz) dons a pair of water skis and, yes, jumps a shark. See the video below for reference (may be considered NSFW due to the unfortunate size of The Fonz’s cut-off shorts. He’s still wearing the leather jacket, however.)

The phrase has been incorporated into the modern day lexicon beyond just a reference to the deterioration in quality of a TV show, but could be used for the deterioration of pretty much anything. An example: That Confessions of a Medical Educator blog wasn’t bad, but they really jumped the shark with that post about jumping the shark.

In response to Susannah’s tweet, I tweeted the following:

You know what I mean, right? We’ve all seen an episode of Happy Days where The Fonz is at Al’s, the moment calls for a little something special, he walks over to the jukebox and – BAM! – gives it a punch and…well, here, watch this:

OK, that wasn’t the best example, but you get the picture. Anyway…the point of all this is that I’m submitting “punch the jukebox”as the go to phrase for those times in life when a situation turns from blah and humdrum to really, really cool. An example: Twitter gave my career a boost, but I really punched the jukebox when I started blogging. Or: That brainstorming session was a complete waste of time until Frederico punched the jukebox with his self-cleaning blender idea.

My goal is to have a punch the jukebox moment every day (my morning coffee doesn’t count, though it probably should). Ambitious? Maybe, but it’s worth a shot. What’s the worst that could happen? (I know, I know – I could end up water skiing in a pair of too-short cut-offs and leather jacket.)

Are we all agreed? Great, it’s settled then. Now…let’s all go out there and punch some jukeboxes!

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5 responses to “Punching The Jukebox

  1. “Punching the jukebox”…that’s great! Of course, you have to be sure it’s understood to refer back to “Happy Days,” otherwise it could be taken to have a meaning OPPOSITE what’s intended (as in “Yeah, I punched the jukebox, but what choice did I have? How many times can ANYONE listen to Taio Cruz?”).

    Also: what is a “jukebox?”

    Another great blog post, The CME Guy!

    • Thanks, Jon! I have to admit that I’m not sure that “punching” is quite the right word. It was more of a backhanded fist “bang” than a punch. But “banging the jukebox” just sounded…well…kind of creepy. 🙂

  2. Okay, fella, what else are you drinking in your morning coffee??!!
    That was a fun post, Derek. Thanks for the smile this morning. :–)

  3. You just set off a major time-wasting binge, but rumor has it there is an actual accepted-by-some opposite of shark-jumping. That would be “Riker’s beard,” as in when Star Trek: The Next Generation suddenly got better in season 2 after Commander Riker started sporting some facial hair (reference: http://bit.ly/HcjLIU).

    But look, there’s more: http://bit.ly/HdBp0k
    I particularly like “Launch the pig (from the movie District 9). Nobody would get it, but it has a certain cachet…

    This discussion (http://bit.ly/HK3TOA) actually goes back to Happy Days down the thread a ways, which punched the jukebox when Fonzie went from a denim to a leather jacket (he wore a denim jacket at first? Who knew?).

    OK, that’s enough of this foolishness. I must go punch a jukebox or grow a beard or do something that’s pig-launch-worthy!

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