Same old same old

Same old, same old is a phrase that means something boring, predictable, dreary.  There are several theories as to the origin of the phrase same old, same old. One theory is that it comes from pidgin English spoken in either post-World War II Japan or Korea during the Korean War. The phrase is alleged to have been same-o, same-o, indicating that something should remain unchanged. Whether same-o, same-o was created by the English speakers or the non-English speakers is unclear. Another theory concerning the origin of same old, same old is that it simply derives from the phrase the same old thing. Whatever the origin, the phrase same old, same old does not appear until the 1970s.



Economists propose same old, same old on tax reform (The Sydney Morning Herald)

Parliamentary elections runoff: same old, same old (The Daily News Egypt)

Cooger adds a few visual flourishes – a fire eater appears in a darkened arena; Philly youth pull wheelies on their motor bikes – that give Creed a bit of new style, but mainly the movie is same old same old. (The Globe & Mail)

IN response to the Off The Ball column (Star, October 22) too many games are rather predictable and consist of the same old, same old. (The Saint Helens Star)

“I decided that it would be a wonderful thing to share because there’s a lot of commercialism for Christmas, a lot of the same-old, same-old,” Brown said. (The Tulsa World)

While it’s a lonely life on the road, living out of a duffel bag, 12-hour drives, same old, same old at dinner every night, there’s solace in knowing people care about what you do. (The Manchester Journal)


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  1. Chris Porter says:

    I’ve always thought, if I’ve given it any thought at all, that “same old same old” is a short form of “I’m doing the same old thing, again.” The repetition is an intensifier in describing the routine. Like your rut has a rut in it.

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