UncleBob's Treehouse, Bob Wallace's excellent blog, mentioned recently that there have been over 80 public school shootings in the past decade as a result of people "going postal."
That phrase originated after a series of five incidents involving postal workers between 1986 and 1993. But it occurs to me that with the far greater number of shootings involving students, it's time for the expression to be updated.
I propose a new phrase for unbalanced people who go berserk: "going scholastic."
You could say that the Columbine killers "went academic."
You could say that Adam Lanza "went scholarly." You might even say that Lanza, given the extremely horrific nature of his crime, "went Phi Beta Kappa."
If you're particularly frustrated with a situation or filled with rage for some reason, you could express your emotions by muttering ominously, "Man, I'm about to go to school."
Or, "I fucking feel like going to college."
Or, "If that jerk pushes me any further, I swear, I'm gonna get studious on his ass."
The change in our language is really long overdue, given that the new phraseology is far more warranted than "going postal" ever was.
When you think about it, the new expressions would work on more than one level. To become scholarly at most colleges these days is to gain a patina of political correctness, which basically translates as factual incorrectness. And since the traditional definition of insanity is to be divorced from reality, the new expressions would be doubly appropriate.