(going to) X like I’ve never Xed before

Hello, and welcome, visitors from Fimoculous!

I haven’t been able to track down an origin for this phrase, if there is one.

Variants on X include act, love, pretend, work, pray, sleep, party, travel, blog, knit, wriggle, lecture, push this book, stalk.

It looks like there might be some limitation on how long a phrase can fill that X slot, at least from what snowclone.pl shows me. This makes sense from a production perspective: it seems like once X gets too long, it’d be easy to either forget how you were going to finish the sentence, or find the sentence so unwieldy by the time you got halfway through it you’d have a hard time finishing it. (“I’m going to lay on the beach and drink margaritas like I’ve never lain on the beach and … Wait, what was I talking about again?”)

I thought “X like you‘ve never Xed before” would be just as common and variable as the I version, but snowclone.pl returns me nothing for it. [I will have to try again later; I seem to be having technical difficulties with the script.]

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7 responses to “(going to) X like I’ve never Xed before

  1. The song “Maniac” from the Flashdance soundtrack comes to mind:

    “She’s a maniac, maniac on the floor/
    And she’s dancing like she’s never danced before”

  2. However, “X you like you’ve never been Xed before” has about 119 kghits (some of them false positives), and I’d guess that the original X here is F, if you understand me.

  3. “And she’s dancing like she’s never danced before.”
    Thanks, now I have Maniac going through my head.

  4. I remember a joke from Rocky and Bullwinkle, I think — “Row like you’ve never rowed before.” “That’ll be easy, I’ve never rowed before.”

  5. I’ve been thinking about this one lately:

    I’m going to whore myself on the Internet like I’ve never whored myself on the Internet before.

  6. From the Flashdance soundtrack:

    “She’s a maniac, maniac on the floor,
    And she’s dancing like she’s never danced before.”

    (Note the ambiguity of the phrase. The intended meaning is usually something like “with unprecedented energy and enthusiasm,” but it can be taken literally to mean “in an awkward, inexperienced manner.”

  7. The earliest I could find is from Harold M. Sherman, “Dinnie’s Weak Backhand”, Boys’ Life (Aug 1929), p. 52:

    “You fellows go out there and play like you’ve never played before!”

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