Tag Archives: Damana Madden

If Tetris Has Taught Me Anything, It’s That Errors Pile Up and Accomplishments Disappear

@AlexeSixx? @_NanooChii? @ Soumi_S? @MissMagdo? @damana?

tetris02Dear Quote Investigator: I have spent hours playing the quasi-hypnotic computer game Tetris. The following astutely funny remark reveals the subversive lesson of the game:

If Tetris has taught me anything, it’s that errors pile up and accomplishments disappear.

I have seen this statement tweeted and retweeted many times. Can you determine who first said it?

Quote Investigator: Tracing a recent expression like this is often difficult because the timestamps listed on websites are easy to modify retroactively; hence, those timestamps may be inaccurate. On the other hand, the database of tweets does appear to have reliable dates, and this article will rely on twitter timestamps.

Another complication occurs when an expression is highly mutable. The earliest strong semantic match located by QI appeared in a tweet on March 26, 2011 from the twitter handle Alexandra Melo @AlexeSixx: 1

Life is a Tetris. Do something good, it disappears immediately. But mistakes, they accumulate themselves. In the end everyone loses.

The phrasing above differed from the common modern saying although the underlying meaning matched, and the key term “disappear” was shared. On March 27, 2011 a very similar tweet emanated from the handle rawwwwwwest @_NanooChii, 2 and on April 1, 2011 a similar tweet was sent by Soumi_A @Soumi_S. 3

Here are additional selected citations in chronological order.

Continue reading

Notes:

  1. Tweet, From: Alexandra Melo @AlexeSixx, Time: 7:19 PM, Date: March 26, 2011, Text: Life is a Tetris. Do something good, it disappears immediately. But mistakes, they accumulate themselves. In the end everyone loses. (Accessed on twitter.com on December 10, 2017) link
  2. Tweet, From: rawwwwwwest @_NanooChii, Time: 10:23 PM, Date: March 27, 2011, Text: Life is a Tetris. Do something good, it disappears immediately. But mistakes, they, they accumulate. In the end everyone loses. (Accessed on twitter.com on December 10, 2017) link
  3. Tweet, From: Soumi_A @Soumi_S, Time: 3:01 PM, Date: April 1, 2011, Text: Life is like Tetris game. Do something good, it disappears immediately. But mistakes, they accumulate. In the end everyone loses. (Accessed on twitter.com on December 10, 2017) link