Etymology (Meaning of Words)/origin of phrases


dAmADtECH wrote at 2007-04-20 05:38:45
Sorry, but my Dad used that expression when I was a kid as did my algebra teached and others. I'm 49 years old now.....

tousha wrote at 2008-02-18 23:33:38
The origin of the phrase began with the movie "When Harry met Sally" from 1989, when she was describing the discrepancy between , er, shall we say men's perceptions and women's faking of orgasms.

Angel wrote at 2008-04-11 08:40:07
Three to five years old?  That can't be right; I certainly it seems like I've been hearing it since I was a teen.  Just by using only books that I have on hand, I find that it was used in an Animorphs book published in 1999 (The Separation, page 48), and it's used as if it were an established phrase that had been around a while.

anderso3 wrote at 2013-04-06 18:40:35
"You do the math" is heard in the 1989 movie "When Harry Met Sally," early in the fake orgasm scene in the restaurant.

VladtheImpala wrote at 2013-06-15 09:43:53
Just watched a season 1 show of Everybody Loves Raymond from 1996 and Peter Boyle uses it so it's definitely older than the three to five years suggested.

g wrote at 2013-12-20 15:14:40
The phrase "you do the math" was included in the dialogue of the 1989 film "When Harry Met Sally..." which pre-dates 2002 previously mentioned, however, this may not be where it originated.

Harry: What is that supposed to mean?

Sally: Nothing. It's just that all men are sure it never happened to them and that most women at one time or another have done it so you do the math.


rivula wrote at 2014-03-07 02:56:54
I think we owe this one to Nora Ephron. Sally Albright uses it in the diner scene in When Harry Met Sally. An approximate quote: "Every woman has done it, no guy thinks it's happened to do the math."

Etymology (Meaning of Words)

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Carol Pozefsky


Etymology: The origins of English words and phrases. Anchor/Reporter NBC and CBS Networks. News Director 3 Regional Radio Stations.

©2017 All rights reserved.

[an error occurred while processing this directive]