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You've got some splainin' to do

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I quite often hear people say splain, or "you've got some splaining to do," or something to that effect.  We all know this was a Ricky Ricardo expression, but I'm just wondering if this came into our language directly from I Love Lucy.  Catch phrases often enter into our language from a TV show during the time they're at their peak in popularity, but after awhile they go away.  Like I remember people saying "sit on it!" (from Happy Days) and "up your nose with a rubber hose" (from Welcome Back, Kotter), but people don't say those things anymore.  But "splain'" I hear quite often.  I've had a couple bosses who used it regularly.  And today I was watching President Obama's press conference about the Iran deal and even he said it.  He was talking about how uranium extraction sites in Iran will be monitored, and said if there are quantities of uranium that appear to be missing, "somebody will have some splainin' to do."  Is this a legacy of Ricky Ricardo?

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It most definitely came from the Desi Arnaz Cadence. However, I don't believe Ricky once said the actual phrase "You've got some 'splainin' to do".


That's interesting. I never thought about that.  It seems every time someone does a Ricky Ricardo imitation, it's always with "Lucy, you got some splainin' to do."  But now that you mention it, I can't think of any time he actually said that.



Correct. "Lucy, 'splain." was most often the variation he used.


Yep.  :)

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