I like literary and cultural references, but I can enjoy them without proving that I get the reference by reciting the entire title or quote.

I know that explicitly sharing social experience is the modern poosking, but I find it gauche. I'm not elitist; I'm just introverted.

So, is there a name for the compulsion to announce and explain references, subtle or otherwise?

  • Showboating? Verbal twerking? – Spehro Pefhany Jan 26 '14 at 5:32
  • No, "showboating" is showing-off. And twerking can mean anything these days. I mean, the need to show everyone that you get the joke, really! – Richard Haven Jan 26 '14 at 5:36

"An annoying habit" comes to mind. I also wonder if it is a bit of a compulsion so maybe the term "compulsive trivia-reciting" can be adopted for this trait. I also know people with this habit and after the 50-millionth Elvis impersonation for "thank you, thank you very much", you can imagine how it is received.


There's no common term for that that I've encountered. If there was, I'd have probably heard it, because this describes my own behavior fairly well, at least with music. I trained my brain in childhood to play a local radio contest. The contest is over, but the training remains.

My wife does the same with Shakespeare. If you say a line of The Bard's around her, you're most likely gonna hear the next line. Just about any engineer I know is liable to pull the same trick on you if you quote from Monty Python's Holy Grail or Princess Bride.

  • Still with the Holy Grail refs? That was driving folks nuts even back in the 1980's. – Wayfaring Stranger Jan 30 '14 at 21:03

Think referential fits the bill

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