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Dallas History

Ask John Neely Bryan: What Does ‘Metroplex’ Mean?

We must stop declaring that we're a bunch of motherlovers.
By John Neely Bryan |
John Neely Bryan, Our Founder
John Neely Bryan, Our Founder

Question: What does “Metroplex” mean? — George L.

To use the term “Metroplex” is to acknowledge that you don’t know where you live.

In my infinite wisdom, I bestowed upon this inimitable patch of prairie the mellifluous appellation “Dallas,” of sturdy Scottish origins with Brittonic roots. Roughly translated, it means Place by the Meadow, the largest city (and the only city that really matters) of the Place by the Meadow-Fort Settlement-Farm of the Elf Counsel’s People metropolitan statistical area.

“Metroplex” means you have no respect for the natural evolution of language, seeing as this verbal atrocity is a shotgun wedding of Greek (“metro-,” deriving from a word for “mother”) and Latin (“-plex,” a shortened form of complexus, meaning “intertwined”) provenance. The idiocy of this unholy matrimony therefore suggests to the remainder of the world that our home is the DFW Mommy Complex. You recognize the problem, I trust? We’ve painted ourselves as sufferers of the Oedipal desire to fornicate with one parent and murder the other.

Maybe life as a motherlover suits you just dandy, but I am not comfortable with the notion that we must adhere to the misguided whims of some shadowy organization headquartered in the sub-urbs. The North Texas Commission should be held responsible and punished to the fullest extent of the law — even if they’ve expressed regret for their crimes. They coined and copyrighted the term in 1972, as they proudly declare on their website. It’s telling, is it not, that this alliance of business interests never changed its own name to Metroplex Commission? What the NTC declared good for the mindless geese who traffic in the dark arts of televised meteorological prophecy, they wouldn’t take a gander at themselves.

And while I don’t yet possess the proof, I suspect the evil they have foisted upon us has extended its tentacles deep into the minds of our nation’s children as well. A popular line of transformable robotic playthings features a character called “Metroplex.” It’s hard not to spy the NTC’s insidious handiwork behind this monstrosity, considering this “toy” is a city that turns into a giant hulking machine with “three smaller autonomous components: Six-Gun: an Autobot who is formed from six of the battle station’s guns combining with one of the city’s towers; Scamper: an Autobot who transforms into a car; and Slammer: a tank which transforms into another of the city’s skyscrapers.

I leave it to you, dear readers, to suss out whether Six-Gun represents Fort Worth, Scamper is Dallas, and Slammer is Arlington (though, obviously, my instincts on this matter are impeccable). I find the further contemplation of these horrors — particularly the manner in which young’ns have been egregiously targeted — too trying to continue.

Have you no sense of decency, would-be Metroplexians? At long last have you left no sense of decency?

Fighting back tears of rage,


John Neely Bryan is the founder of the city of Dallas and an expert on all matters. Email him for advice, to have a dispute adjudicated, or to seek his wisdom on any of a myriad of topics, at [email protected].

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