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Figaro rips the innards out of things people say and reveals the rhetorical tricks and pratfalls. For terms and definitions, click here.
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    Don't Sing This Backwards or You'll Grow Back Hair

    "You get your house back
    You get your dog back
    You get your best friend Jack back
    You get your truck back
    You get your hair back
    You get your first and second wife back
    Your front porch swing
    Your pretty little thing…"
    Lyrics from the Rascal Flatts song "Backwards"

    Figure of Speech: symploce (SIM-plo-see), the first-and-last repeater.

    Country musicians say that weird things happen when you sing a song backwards.  To get a back-n-forth rocking sound, Rascal Flatts employs a symploce ("intertwining"), a figure that repeats the first and last word in consecutive clauses.  Hip hop artists and politicians love it because it creates a sing-a-long in listeners’ heads, making them collaborators — however reluctant.

    For its part, Rascal Flatts’ new hit album does its gosh-darn best to cover all the tear-jerkin’, foot-stompin’ bases of its genre.  ("Grandma burned the biscuits/ Nearly took the house down with it/ Now she’s in assisted livin’.")  Makes you want to cry, doesn’t it?

    Snappy Answer: " Can I get store credit instead?"

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