There are certain phrases that once uttered, become instant catch phrases.
From my generation, we'll always have;
How YOU doin'?
No soup for you!
All that and a bag of chips.
Show me the money!
Talk to the hand.
Don't go there.
Hasta la Vista, baby.
That's what she said.
And so on.
There are also the lesser famous catch phrases made by popular by the people you know and love.
For instance, when my brother was a toddler, he fell off the kitchen chair in my grandparents' kitchen. Those of us who witnesses his tumble began to laugh. And my brother, bless his heart, shouted very loudly, not too funny! He hated to be embarrassed, hated to be the center of attention. And there you have my family's favorite catch phrase, still used 20+ years later.
Last weekend, we played for three straight days out of town. On Monday afternoon, we stopped by my parents' to retrieve the Beagle. The lil' dude, tired from her adventures and freshly up from a 20-minute nap, was devastated when she learned we wouldn't be spending anytime with her Grandma, with whom she had just spent the weekend with.
As we buckled her defiant little behind into her car seat, the wailing truly began. She started to cry hard for her Grandma, for the dog named Bernice, and the cats.
She kept repeating I need Grandma! I need Bernice! I need Cat! over and over again, her face a hot mess of tears.
And, here I Need Cat was established as our new catch phrase.
At my parents', there are three cats. My mom? Does not like cats. The one above, Mildred, is my Dad's cat I bought him for Father's Day 7 years ago to mend his broken heart after our old gray cat died from diabetes. Mildred lives in the garage, and tries to sneak in for snacks and sleep. The other two cats, Bill and Ted, are now permanent residents after my brother brought them home from his college house, and failed to bring them to his new house. Those cats are strictly garage cats, separated from Mildred in their own garage. And they love the lil' dude. And she loves them. All of them.
So, when you're a tired, sad, mad, crying toddler who just really wants her Grandma, the dog named Bernice, and ALL the cats, the only thing that makes sense is to say, I Need Cat.
And then listen to your parents say that out of context for the next 20+ years.