Far Out Man is the name of a 1990 American comedy film but that is not the subject I’m writing about. This interjection has been used for most of my life when I’m impressed by your new car, the the ghost in your attic, a talking seal, or the trampoline in your tree post tornado. It was quite popular in my childhood days but I don’t hear much lately. When you turn 50, you don’t care much anymore about what people say or wear so I use the term more liberally than ever.
Urban Dictionary defines it as: When something is cool, you say Far Out! Often used by hippies. I wasn’t a happy but I did live in the 70’s and in grade school a lot of the kids used it. As with most subjects I am curious with where and when the expression originated.
A Way With Words aired a segment and this is what I heard. According to Grant Barrett the term began in the form of “beyond compare” in the 1600’s. Late in the early 1800’s, “out of sight” was used. Then in the early 1920’s “out of this world” became the popular phrase. Then in the 1950’s, “far out of this world” was frequented in jazz magazines and album covers. Over time it found its way with surfers. The surf is where I thought “Far Out” originated and I believe many people today agree.
There are other terms from the past that I use from time to time.
Cool Right On Awesome Backatcha Bomb Whatever What’s Happening What’s your 20? Hey man Totally Scarf Rip Off Gig Keepin It Real Psyched Dude