--- is the new ---
Posted: 04 July 2018 03:14 PM   [ Ignore ]
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What’s the original of this and how long has it been current? I’m guessing 60s/70s, perhaps from the fashion world, but I have no real basis for that.

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Posted: 05 July 2018 02:34 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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http://itre.cis.upenn.edu/~myl/languagelog/archives/003981.html

This LanguageLog article might help.

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Posted: 05 July 2018 05:46 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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It’s mentioned in the article linked above, but I want to call out that the generic term for such expressions is snowclone, from the form “Eskimos have X words for snow.”

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Posted: 05 July 2018 06:16 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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So it looks like it only goes back to the early ‘80s:

Colors are slated to be somber and muted, say most of the designers who previewed their collections for Fashion83. For example, Ferre says gray is the new black. (Los Angeles Times, Mar. 4, 1983, p. V6)

(The Log post is confusingly written; it turns out neither Diana Vreeland nor Gloria Vanderbilt had anything to do with it.)

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