NTMP 69: Title of Your Sex Tape
New-to-me Phrases, June 4, 2023
The Phrases, With Context
Happy Pride! ❤️🧡💛💚💙💜
And so a new month begins, bringing with it a new batch of phrases. In fact, this is the 69th edition of NTMP. (nice) This week we have some purrfectly punny names, dirty tomatoes, mustachioed mopeds, and more.
But first: Poll results!
Murder nuggets took the lead for NTMP readers’ favorite phrase from May, with Cod Stewart as the runner-up. Congrats tofor coining this phrase and to all who voted for it.
Let’s get to it!
1. Mustache bikes
Whilst on a bike trail in Amsterdam, presumably on his way to see some fucking windmills, my friend Tom saw a sign that read:
Snorfietsen niet toegestaan
Which his phone translated to:
Mustache bikes not allowed
Snorfietsen are mopeds that can go up to 40 kph. Bromfietsen are mopeds that can go faster. According to Tom, they are named for the sound they make. I love a language that intuitively makes sense. By the way, if you’re a Mac admin or really dig Mac admins (and frankly, who doesn’t?), Tom co-hosts a podcast you might want to check out.
This word sounds like something out of Lord of the Rings. According to Atlas Obscura, Tregothnan (which means “the house at the head of the valley” in Cornish) is an English tea plantation—the first and only one in the country. Owned by the same family since 1334, the estate also has a private botanical garden with a 170-year-old rhododendron bush that looks to be the size of a small house. Here at NTMP, we love a big bush.
The subtropical microclimate at Tregothnan makes it ideal for growing plants and trees from other parts of the world (this is where I learned that rhododendrons are from the Himalayas). The Tregothnan botanical garden has therefore taken up a mission of growing endangered trees from around the world.
3. Gomi Hiroi samurai
With over 720K followers on TikTok, the Gomi Hiroi samurai are a group of actors who volunteer to pick up trash in Tokyo. Wearing denim kimonos and wielding fire tongs as swords, their goal is to make keeping the city clean entertaining, with the hope that others will want to help out, too. Acting, getting exercise, looking cool, and doing a public good? I’m into it.
This spring, nonprofit pet rescue Pippi’s Place created a social media post designed to look like Carvana, dubbing it Catvana, and the Internet went wild over it.
Other car-to-cat puns included:
Mini Pooper (NGL, this was the runner-up phrase)
You really have to swipe through that post to see how they added cat features, such as four-paw-drive, anti-slip tires, and cookie pouches.
I would totally be friends with the person who came up with this.
5. Night Poops
Thanks to NTMP reader Beth for this one. I don’t know if this typo really happened, but it looks like a screenshot of the City of Muskogee Facebook account posting an event called Night Poops instead of Night Hoops. And I guess you’d have to have an awful lot of free time to create a fake Facebook post where a city’s social media account makes a scatological typo, so let’s assume it’s valid.
I get that the city staffer was trying to be funny, but I love that their reaction to the typo implies that hordes of Muskogeeites1 (Muskogeeans?) would drop everything they were doing for a chance to poop on the hardwood.
I think Night Poops is one hell of a phrase, and “Night Poops is back” is an excellent and vaguely menacing sentence. Alas, all great things come with a price. And that price is having the Bob Seger song Night Moves stuck in my head. Can Weird Al make this a thing?
I didn’t realize there was a word for cracking up during a take until I read this Rolling Stone interview with Sarah Goldberg talking about how it was a challenge to not laugh at something D’Arcy Carden (aka Janet from The Good Place) would improvise on the set of Barry.
A classic example of corpsing is Tim Conway cracking up Harvey Korman on The Carol Burnett Show.
7. Tom Volk's Fungus of the Month
The other day, I noticed something bright yellow in one of my flower beds. I thought it was a plastic bag, but when I went to check it out, I found what looked like someone had dropped some of the paint they use to stripe roads onto the mulch. There were a few blobs of the stuff, so I went inside and googled it, and . . .
It’s a slime mold that often travels with mulch added to flower beds that flourishes. It flourishes humid environments (including over-watering, which I did not do). And it quickly changes from bright yellow to a sort of dull beige, which is where it gets the nickname “dog vomit slime mold.”
Big Last of Us energy over here. (I know a slime mold isn’t a fungus but it’s close—and gross—enough!)
Speaking of The Last of Us, one of my favorite humorists Drew Magary described Pedro Pascal as “like if Jeremy Renner were a normal person,” which brought me tremendous joy.
Fortunately, aside from looking disgusting, this slime mold Fuligo septica is harmless to humans and animals. You just wait for it to reach the dog vomit phase, where it dries up, and scoop it up and discard it.
Back to this week’s phrase. One of the sources I found linked to this glorious artifact from 1999 (uh, definitely mute your sound before clicking), from a series called Tom Volk’s Fungus of the Month. How can one not IMMEDIATELY like this guy?
In that link, Dr. Volk shares that slime molds function rather like giant amoebae, and that the cult classic horror movie The Blob was based on them. Sadly, Tom Volk died late last year at age 63. The recipient of a heart transplant in 2006, Volk was grateful for the years that sacrifice gave him. He taught mycology at the University of Wisconsin LaCrosse, which means he totally could’ve been a character on The Last of Us, warning us of mushroom menaces to come.
Here is the entire Fungus of the Month archive. God bless the Internet.
If you need me, I’ll be spending today scooping up dog vomit slime mold from my garden. Adulthood sucks!
8. Trenthouse Magazine
A nickname that Ted gave to Trent Krimm in the series finale of Ted Lasso that made me LOL.
9. Bush Champion
Saw this tomato variety at the garden center and LOLed because I’m 12. As if encouraging me on purpose, Burpee describes the Bush Champion as having “big, meaty fruit.”
That’s it for this week! Remember to stay curious and remain furious.
Subscribing is objectively cool. 😎
New-to-me Phrases is a subscriber-supported series of ongoing jokes and assorted oddities for curious minds. Readers are a small but mighty group of weirdos, and I cherish your time and attention along with your belief in this project. Special shout-out to both longtime readers and paid subscribers for your support, and welcoming bear hugs to new readers.
A labor of love I’ve dispatched weekly since January 2022 (except for the week when my family and I had COVID), a paid subscription honors the time and creative effort that goes into this newsletter:
If you’d rather send a one-time payment of $.69 (or whatever amount you deem worthy of NTMP), you can do that here via Venmo.