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#1
Old 06-18-2005, 11:23 PM
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Origin of quote, "I said GOOD DAY, sir!"

The phrase is usually haughtily enounced in a upper-class British accent, as though one is about to stomp off in a huff. Jon Stewart uses it frequently on The Daily Show, and Google returns a lot of similar references. The only lead I have found is that Willy Wonka has a similar line in Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, but I don't remember the tone of the dialogue to say for certain whether it matches.
#2
Old 06-19-2005, 12:13 AM
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I'm thinking it's how polite society used to brush people off, and visibly show anger without breaking any huge rules of etiquette.
#3
Old 06-19-2005, 12:18 AM
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Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory.
#4
Old 06-19-2005, 12:31 AM
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It's Fez's tag line in That 70s Show, too.
#5
Old 06-19-2005, 12:37 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Exapno Mapcase
It's Fez's tag line in That 70s Show, too.
And Fez does it the very best.

"Now good day!"
"But Fez--"
(holding up hand)"ISAIDGOODDAY!"
#6
Old 06-19-2005, 12:39 AM
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John Zoidberg, M.D., does a pretty good one too.
#7
Old 06-19-2005, 01:21 AM
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I'd go with Stark Raven Mad's initial explanation. I doubt that you will find a "first use" (although you might check Jane Austen or one of her contemporaries). Tolkien employed it in the opening scene of The Hobbit (using "Good Morning" instead of "Good Day" and letting Gandalf do a little riff on the various meanings which Bilbo has invested in the phrase in a very short conversation).
#8
Old 06-19-2005, 01:31 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gentle
The only lead I have found is that Willy Wonka has a similar line in Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, but I don't remember the tone of the dialogue to say for certain whether it matches.
Wonka delivers the line in a tone of extreme anger. It's near the end of the movie, after he's ordered Charlie and Grampa Joe to leave and given a long list of their offenses, concluding with "GOOD DAY, SIR!" They start to protest, and Wonka turns and yells again "I SAID GOOD DAY!"

This probably popularized the phrase and that's definitely what I think of when I hear people say it, but if you notice, it's a case of "Play it again, Sam." Wonka never actually says "I said good day sir." And I didn't realize that until halfway through the post, and I checked IMDb to be sure.
#9
Old 06-19-2005, 02:05 AM
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Stark Raven Mad probably nailed it.

I can find a use of the device in an 1876 Chicago Tribune news story.

A defendant in a trial tells a badgering newspaper reporter, "I bid you good day, sir." And he means "quit asking me questions which I'm not going to answer."
#10
Old 06-19-2005, 02:32 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gentle
The phrase is usually haughtily enounced in a upper-class British accent, as though one is about to stomp off in a huff. Jon Stewart uses it frequently on The Daily Show, and Google returns a lot of similar references. The only lead I have found is that Willy Wonka has a similar line in Willy Wonka & the Chocolate Factory, but I don't remember the tone of the dialogue to say for certain whether it matches.

I'm sorry, gentle. I didn't see that you had mentioned Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory right in the OP.

Whenever I hear that line--and I heard it this week on The Daily Show--I always think of that same line from Wonka delivered by Gene Wilder, because typically, it is said in the same manner. Jon Stewart said it very much the same way.
#11
Old 06-19-2005, 03:43 AM
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The utterance "I said-I said Good Day, Sir!" said by a haughty old man with an English accent is ringing major bells with me....like it's from a specific TV or radio show.
Either The Goon Show....
Or maybe the Major from Fawlty Towers...
Something of that nature.
#12
Old 06-19-2005, 05:16 AM
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The phrase has "music hall" acts written all over it. It's a convienient exit line just as much as "I say, I say, I say!" is an entry line So it's probably been in show business forever.

Comedian 1: [Enters] I say, I say, I say!
Comedian 2: [Enters] ?
Comedian 1: Joke setup...
Comedian 2: ?
Comedian 1: Punchline, rimshot
Comedian 2: I did not wish to know that, good day sir!
[Both Exit]
#13
Old 06-19-2005, 08:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Electronic Chaos
And Fez does it the very best.

"Now good day!"
"But Fez--"
(holding up hand)"ISAIDGOODDAY!"
For me it is one of the major weakness's of the show. It was never that clever, but now having become totally predictable it is most annoying. But then, the whole character of Fez is rather annoying to me.
#14
Old 06-19-2005, 09:12 AM
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You will also find some similar in Dicken's A Christmas Carol when Scrooge is dismissing his nephew's relentless good cheer:

" Because you fell in love!" growled Scrooge, as if that were the only one thing in the world more ridiculous than a merry Christmas. "Good afternoon!"

"Nay, uncle, but you never came to see me before that happened. Why give it as a reason for not coming now?"

"Good afternoon," said Scrooge.

"I want nothing from you; I ask nothing of you; why cannot we be friends?"

"Good afternoon," said Scrooge.

"I am sorry, with all my heart, to find you so resolute. We have never had any quarrel, to which I have been a party. But I have made the trial in homage to Christmas, and I'll keep my Christmas humour to the last. So A Merry Christmas, uncle!"

"Good afternoon," said Scrooge.

"And A Happy New Year!"

"Good afternoon!" said Scrooge.

His nephew left the room without an angry word, notwithstanding. "
#15
Old 06-19-2005, 09:38 AM
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Another vote for Wonka. All of my friends recognize the Stewart quote and the similar quote by Janeane Garofalo in Mystery Men as a reference to that classic scene between Grampa Joe and Wonka.
#16
Old 06-19-2005, 09:41 AM
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Dustin Hoffman in TOOTSIE, exiting Dr. Brewster's office.
#17
Old 06-19-2005, 09:58 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ms Boods
"Good afternoon," said Scrooge."
I associated the line with A Christmas Carol, too. Note that my first exposure to the story was the 1962 Mr. Magoo version. In this version, Magoo/Scrooge dismisses the two charity workers from his office by standing, shaking his fist at them, and shouting, "I bid you...GOOD AFTERNOON!"

Then he returns to his desk and chortles: "That's the beauty of it--I don't pledge anything!
#18
Old 06-19-2005, 10:24 AM
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From just reading the title of the thread, I thought of Wonka.
#19
Old 06-19-2005, 10:41 AM
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Pretty sure Homer Simpson has said it too.
#20
Old 06-19-2005, 12:48 PM
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Thanks, everyone. Now I need to dig up a copy of Wonka and watch it again.

Stark Raven Mad, exactly. Marley23 nailed the quote.

As for the suggestions from tomndebb and others that it's older than time itself to brush people off with a "good day" or some variation on this, naturally I realize this; but the quotation I'm chasing is said with a very specific emphasis: Jon Stewart in particular nails the tone in how he puffs himself up first and then puts a little space between each word. It sounds so familiar, I feel like this meme must have originated with some movie and TV show.
#21
Old 07-02-2005, 01:47 AM
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here's a clip from WW&tCF

a little more than halfway down the page to WW&tCF; the clip is the 5th one down.

Bo
#22
Old 07-02-2005, 04:12 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sarah Woodruff
The utterance "I said-I said Good Day, Sir!" said by a haughty old man with an English accent is ringing major bells with me....like it's from a specific TV or radio show..
" I said-I said" ... Foghorn Leghorn ?

does anyone have a copy of The hobbit to hand? Bilbo said something similar to Gandalf in chapter one IIRC.
#23
Old 07-02-2005, 07:51 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Morris
does anyone have a copy of The hobbit to hand?
Probably everyone reading this has a copy of The Hobbit on hand.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bilbo Baggins
"Good morning!" he said at last. "We don't want any adventures here, thank you! You might try over The Hill or across The Water."
But Gandalf is not so easily dismissed, and after another page worth of verbal sparring:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bilbo Baggins
"Sorry! I don't want any adventures, thank you. Not today. Good morning! But please come to tea--any time you like. Why not tomorrow? Come tomorrow! Good bye!"
Which is all rather more cordial than the frosty "Good day sir!" of the OP.
#24
Old 07-05-2005, 09:01 AM
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While I agree with everyone who notes that the phrase has a long and storied history as a brush-off, it's popularity as a catch-phrase in the last few years -- with the particular emphasis noted in the OP -- is certainly the result of more recent use. I believe the repopularization is from Fez on That 70's Show, although Homer Simpson may have had something to do with it.

--Cliffy
#25
Old 07-05-2005, 09:25 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pseudotriton ruber ruber
Dustin Hoffman in TOOTSIE, exiting Dr. Brewster's office.
Tootsie is one of my top five favorite movies, and I want to say that she was kicking him out of her office. Either that or they weren't in anybody's office. The line wasn't shown during the actual soap; it was part of her audition.
#26
Old 07-05-2005, 10:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scarlett67
Tootsie is one of my top five favorite movies, and I want to say that she was kicking him out of her office. Either that or they weren't in anybody's office. The line wasn't shown during the actual soap; it was part of her audition.
Also delivered by the Terri Garr character as part of her (unsuccessful) audition.

"Did you feel how much I hated you?"

Dustin Hoffman in Tootsie is the best single performance ever delivered by an actor.

Regards,
Shodan
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#27
Old 03-12-2012, 04:17 PM
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Movie Quote, "I said good day. I said good day!

It is also from the movie "Tootsie" with Dustin Hoffman. Dustin secretly protrays a woman to get a job as an actress on a soap opera. On the soap he plays a hospital administrator and took the liberty of changing his character's script when speaking to the womanizing doctor. Instead of being forced to kiss a man, he tells the doctor, "good day...."
#28
Old 03-12-2012, 04:23 PM
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A few of you got Tootsie already, whoops!

I thought I scrolled down far enough. This is the only site that actually references Tootsie! So good for us!
#29
Old 03-12-2012, 05:11 PM
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Huh?

"Good day" is the British equivalent of "Good bye" (during the day, of course).

Saying "Good day" was the polite equivalent of ending a conversation and saying "That's it. We're finished. Now go away." If the other person persisted in carrying on the conversation, the offended party says the equivalent of "I already said 'Bub-bye' now get lost."

In Scrooge's case, he just repeats "Good afternoon". Some people are less patient and say "I've already said ( good bye / good day / good afternoon / you can go now / that's it end of story / go away!)."

I'm not sure it was ever originally anyone's signature line. It was just common usage... how to politely tell the other party to fuck off. The fact that you then told them you'd already told them so merely emphasized that you thought that they were wasting your time and being irritating, and did not want further discussion. The polite and considerate understood the brush-off, the persistent and irritating were ignoring it and had to be told twice. (or more)

I suppose if used in North America, there is the added element of pretentiousness or snobbery by using a British upper-class politeness.

Last edited by md2000; 03-12-2012 at 05:12 PM.
#30
Old 03-12-2012, 05:32 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Morris View Post
" I said-I said" ... Foghorn Leghorn ?
Foghorn Leghorn is mostly based on Senator Claghorn on the Fred Allen Show, so it's not likely to be related.
#31
Old 03-12-2012, 06:06 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Merigold View Post
I thought I scrolled down far enough. This is the only site that actually references Tootsie! So good for us!
And we did it almost seven years ago!
#32
Old 03-12-2012, 09:58 PM
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Then that's it then. No more replies to this thread please.
#33
Old 03-12-2012, 10:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Autolycus View Post
Then that's it then. No more replies to this thread please.
Autolycus: ....and good day, sirs.

Mahaloth: Well, there was this one movie...

Autolycus: I said GOOD DAY, sirs!

The End.
#34
Old 03-13-2012, 04:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by md2000 View Post
Huh?

"Good day" is the British equivalent of "Good bye" (during the day, of course).

Saying "Good day" was the polite equivalent of ending a conversation and saying "That's it. We're finished. Now go away." If the other person persisted in carrying on the conversation, the offended party says the equivalent of "I already said 'Bub-bye' now get lost."
This has got to be it. The OP is basically asking who was the person to first more sternly repeat a farewell after their conversation partner wouldn't leave. I'm sure humans have been doing this for as long as we've known how to talk.
#35
Old 03-13-2012, 12:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Autolycus View Post
Then that's it then. No more replies to this thread please.
Point of order, please. Can someone "Good Day, Sir" a conversation they didn't start? Seems like that'd be more appropriately done with a Irish Paddy accent, "Moooove along now, nuthin' ta see here..."
#36
Old 03-13-2012, 06:07 PM
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I swear I remember Bobby Hill on King of the Hill saying this. Arms crossed, all ticked off, "I say good day to you, sir!"
#37
Old 03-13-2012, 09:37 PM
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The John Cleese character in the classic Python "Argument Clinic" sketch also uses "Good morning" as a brushoff. See here, starting at 2:35: http://youtube.com/watch?v=kQFKtI6gn9Y
#38
Old 04-09-2012, 05:14 PM
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I saw this in Washington, DC last week.

I wonder what it means?
#39
Old 04-09-2012, 06:13 PM
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In Secret of My Success, Helen Slater as the stiff executive uses "Good morning" to brush off Michael J. Fox.
#40
Old 04-10-2012, 01:35 PM
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I seem to recall Alistar Sim delivers this line in Scrooge. (When the 2 guys are trolling for funds for the orphans and such) Way pre-dates Wonka. I'm not 100% sure, however.
#41
Old 04-10-2012, 08:13 PM
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Matthew Brock (Andy Dick) said it on NewsRadio, and the way he said it made it sound like an old line when it was used then.
#42
Old 04-11-2012, 03:33 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by C. Montgomery Burns View Post
Matthew Brock (Andy Dick) said it on NewsRadio, and the way he said it made it sound like an old line when it was used then.
WHEW. I was going down this thread thinking, "what, are there no NewsRadio fans in this damn thread?"

Phil Hartman's Bill McNeal certainly used the line, possibly in one of the episodes where he took over Dave's job (the one where he installs a piano instead of a desk).

Last edited by choie; 04-11-2012 at 03:33 AM.
#43
Old 04-11-2012, 08:35 PM
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G'day.
#44
Old 04-12-2012, 01:00 AM
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We know what it means; the question is when this exact phrasing became popular.
#45
Old 04-12-2012, 10:53 PM
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This is from where it came:

http://youtube.com/watch?v=F9gRzmCf1EI
#46
Old 08-10-2012, 06:33 PM
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A Yank at Oxford

I just saw it near the end of "A Yank at Oxford" (1938), when the Dean is telling young Wavertree that he will not be expelled (Wavertree wanted to be, though):

Dean: Good day!
Wavertree: but...but...
Dean: I said good day!

Pretty classic construction, and possibly one of the first uses in film (although the Scrooge "Good afternoon" may have been sooner).
#47
Old 08-10-2012, 06:41 PM
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Adam Carolla had a hilarious bit on Loveline about "I said GOOD DAY!" but I don't know what year, I'm pretty sure it was before the new Willy Wonka movie.
#48
Old 08-10-2012, 07:03 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by brewha View Post
This is from where it came:

http://youtube.com/watch?v=F9gRzmCf1EI
The clip that shows the scene from the OP's 7 year old post?

Quote:
Originally Posted by rogerbox View Post
Adam Carolla had a hilarious bit on Loveline about "I said GOOD DAY!" but I don't know what year, I'm pretty sure it was before the new Willy Wonka movie.
Yes, but the wonka movie people are referencing is the 1970's Wonka, which predates Loveline by quite a bit.
#49
Old 04-19-2013, 09:25 PM
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From my understanding president Lincoln said this shortly after becoming elected. He was considered to be a bit of an outsider/bumpkin, between both where he came from and his slow speech patterns. A number of traditional political interests helped him become elected and assumed that a)he didn't really know what he was doing as he wasn't an insider, so he could be pushed around, and b)because they helped him get elected he was beholden to them. They came in on effectively the first day he was in office and tried to push him into doing their bidding, to which he responded: Good day to you sirs. They kept pushing, to which he replied I said good day & then had them escorted out.
Long story short, he really did follow up on that and did not buckle to the pressure of those who helped get him elected (and assumed that would give them control of him).


I cannot find verification of this online, but I remember one of my history teachers relating this story to me in ~1997 quite clearly. It was the first time I heard the phrase, and it smacked of lincoln stubborn and badass qualities which he continued to display throughout his presidency.
#50
Old 04-19-2013, 10:26 PM
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I said, "Zombie Thread!", sir!
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