About This Site

Figaro rips the innards out of things people say and reveals the rhetorical tricks and pratfalls. For terms and definitions, click here.
(What are figures of speech?)
Ask Figaro a question!

This form does not yet contain any fields.

    « Channeling MLK | Main | Human Sacrifice, Dogs and Cats Living Together! »

    Go Figure

    fit_hand.2.jpgQuote: “The Fit is Go!” Ad campaign for Honda, submitted by Figarist Brandon Smith in Ask Figaro

     Figure of Speech: metallage (meh-TALL-uh-gee), the getting all medieval figure.  From the Greek, meaning “making a swap.”

    Honda’s new itty-bitty car uses itty-bitty words for its slogan. That, we’re sure, is deliberate. But Brandon wonders why the “go”? Is the ad agency attempting a self-loathing Asian version of Fahrfignugen? Or, on the contrary, is it employing a patriotic NASAism, as in”The system is go” or “We’re go to launch”?

     Either way, we’re go for a metallage. The figure takes a part of speech that isn’t a noun — such as a verb or adjective — and uses it as the object of a sentence.  You can see a great instance of the figure in the film Pulp Fiction, where Samuel Jackson threatens “to get all medieval on your ass.” And President Bush deployed a metallage when he accused Democrats of being “the party of cut and run.”

     Figaro usually loves the figure, because it injects novelty into our hoary language. But using it on a cute car strikes us as a tad too precious metallage.

    Snappy Answer: “The campaign should be stop.”

    PrintView Printer Friendly Version

    EmailEmail Article to Friend

    Reader Comments (4)

    The European "Smart" car should fit into this equation somehow...

    January 18, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterDiana
    I haven't seen the ad. What the hey does it mean? Could you translate into English, or even Spanish, for me, please?
    Ciao, Bella
    January 18, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterBella Silverstein
    El Fit esta Go!

    English translation: The Fit is here.
    Connotation: The Fit is happening.

    You savvy?

    January 18, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterFigaro
    The Pulp Fiction line was actually spoken by Ving Rhames, for what it's worth.
    January 30, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterThomas

    PostPost a New Comment

    Enter your information below to add a new comment.

    My response is on my own website »
    Author Email (optional):
    Author URL (optional):
    All HTML will be escaped. Hyperlinks will be created for URLs automatically.