The Washington Post
How to tell a square
Ronald G. Shafer’s March 11 Style essay about the way cultural references fade from generational memory, “Apparently, I didn’t have ’em at ‘ hello,’ ” brought back a funny childhood memory.
My brothers and I were aficionados of “Mad” magazine, and a 1968 issue explained to us young ’uns how to tell “a square” from a hip person. A square’s telltale characteristic, it said, was the use of the expression “hubba hubba.” We’d never heard the phrase before — but wouldn’t you know that our dad used it just a few days later. He couldn’t understand why we were laughing so hysterically until we showed him the issue.