• Vincent Sell

Laughter


My brother’s sense of humor was one of the most delightful aspects of his personality. After he died, all of his friends spoke about how funny he was. It took me a while to realize, and remember all the times throughout my life he made me laugh. He had a way of using a well-placed, off-the-wall comment to sum up a situation perfectly.

I also credit him with my first memory of truly laughing, and by that I mean laughing uncontrollably and joyously. He would stand in front of me and mouth the words to my Elvis album in such a ridiculous fashion that it had me rolling on the couch in hysterics.

Below is a list of words and phrases he often used. Some of them are borrowed and some of them he coined himself. At times, he would deliver them with hand gestures, or while staring up into the heavens, or both. It was also common for him to use an absurd inflection in his voice, or deliver them dryly.


Aerobicize—Any type of exercise that might be considered sassy (see: Sassy)

Can I get a little?—A phrase wherein he expressed his desire to “get a little…”

Flutter—To become so agitated that one completely loses one’s bearing

Flutter Chicken—Someone who is prone to fluttering

Get aggressive!—A command he would verbalize to himself prior to entering battle

Giddy up—A phrase that somehow implied he was riding you

Go Flappy—Lose one’s marbles

Interesting—A comment used, by itself, which implied you weren’t exactly telling the whole story

Kick it up a notch—Bringing something closer to the tippy-top. (See: Tippy top)

Make it go away!—A plea to the gods that they remove us from an awful situation

Making it burn—Turning the screws on someone with your wit

Nappy-nap—A nap

Rat-tat-tat—A sound effect he used when he was ramping up his aggression

Relaxabop—Completely giving oneself over to relaxation

Relaxatron—Same as relaxabop, only with more intensity

Rita—According to Matt, Mom’s real name

Sassafrass—General statement to indicate sassiness is occurring (See: Sassy)

Sassy—Any act that is flamboyant, overly exuberant, or attention seeking

Taking it—Allowing oneself to be abused. “Are you still taking it from _____?”

This is Shangri-La!—An announcement that we were all about to embark on something very enjoyable

Thwart—To subtly trip up someone’s operation. “He was getting a little full of himself, so I had to thwart.

Tippy top—Used to describe an acquisition that is the very best one can get

Treat yourself special—Any type of extreme self-pampering

Uba—Dad’s real name

Welcome to the Thunderdome!—Used to let you know you were about to enter with him into mortal combat

We’re dying over here!—A phrase indicating that the wait has been way too long, i.e.: for dinner to be served

What’s the frequency?—Status check

Whiplash—To rile someone up so much that they lose control. “He’s still angry, because I whiplashed him.”