It may have taken nearly seven years, but at long last a mispronunciation has finally broken enough brains to be on a par with John Travolta calling Broadway legend Idina Menzel "Adele Dazeem" during a live broadcast of the Oscars to billions of people.
Who is the new holder of this most auspicious of titles?
None other than celebrity chef Nigella Lawson, whose pronunciation of "microwave" is so wonderfully weird that people on Twitter are fully obsessed.
The unique interpretation of the word came during a recent segment of Lawson's BBC show Cook, Eat, Repeat.
Nigella Lawson saying 'Microwave' like this has made my Christmas already https://t.co/ByXTDVIloq— Orekelewa (@Orekelewa) 1607430807.0
The moment was part of a special episode of Lawson's show for the upcoming Christmas holiday that aired Monday evening.
It all starts off normally enough—Lawson is making a big pot of one of everyone's favorite winter staples, mashed potatoes, talking her viewers through her process, as TV chefs do.
But then it comes time to add some milk to the potatoes and things take an abrupt—and hilarious—turn as Lawson pronounces the word "microwave" as, say, an old-world Italian grandmother might:
"Now I'm aiming for quite a solid mash at this stage, but I still need a bit of milk—full fat, which I've warmed in the 'meekro-wah-vay'."
Never has a microwave had such flair, such style, such panache.
As many online remarked, "meekro-wah-vay" has a certain Latin feel to it, like something Roman statesman Cicero, famous for popularizing the idea of "bread and circuses"—panem et circenses—keeping the Roman citizens docile.
Perhaps the original quote was about "panem, circenses et meekrowahvé"? Or it could be Lawson's way of paying homage to one of her predecessors, ancient Roman cookbook author Marcus Gavius Apicius?
Perhaps she calls the refrigerator a "frigidarium" and a spatula a "spatulinus" too, just to keep the theme going.
Whatever its origin, Lawson's Latin-tinged "meekro-wah-vay" joke definitely hit Twitter on its collective nervus ulnaris (that's Latin for funny bone).
People could not get enough of this weird and wonderful moment.
@Nigella_Lawson pronunciation of microwave is how I’m gonna be saying it from now on thx https://t.co/wiRoMk09wS— dr nabila 🌹 (@dr nabila 🌹) 1607434094.0
I am in disbelief about how nigella pronounces microwave 🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣🤣 https://t.co/TyVIffRTyO— Molly (@Molly) 1607426504.0
@Nigella_Lawson pronunciation of 'microwave' is a highlight of 2020 for me #CookEatRepeat https://t.co/hA01zdpuRV— witness protecSHAUN⚪ (@witness protecSHAUN⚪) 1607373321.0
Eternally grateful to Nigella Lawson for letting us know we've all been mispronouncing microwave for the last 50 (o… https://t.co/CBhm9k8GUs— andrew (@andrew) 1607429841.0
From this day onwards, I will only call it a mîcrowàvé #Nigella https://t.co/DoFX6TpbrU— Jordan🌟 (@Jordan🌟) 1607426259.0
Nigella Lawson pronouncing microwave https://t.co/OuzC6iUtuB— GRACE (@GRACE) 1607476157.0
As I’ve just recently bought a microwave I thought I should name it in honour of last night’s episode of Nigella. I… https://t.co/2dJMpgjPqO— Cat (@Cat) 1607461649.0
@Nigella_Lawson I’ve changed the Microwave oven Wikipedia page in your honour 🙌🏻 #NigellaLawson #Microwave https://t.co/rbFtFIID6W— MadHats (@MadHats) 1607506157.0
Now lest you think—as many, many people on Twitter did—that Lawson just doesn't know how to pronounce microwave, take heart.
She confirmed it was absolutely a joke.
@craiguk1983 Well, I do say it like that, but not because I think that’s how it’s actually pronounced— Nigella Lawson (@Nigella Lawson) 1607452255.0
And even joined in on the meme-y fun that ensued.
I know I said enough now, but couldn’t resist https://t.co/JSRZzEwpPU— Nigella Lawson (@Nigella Lawson) 1607529810.0
And if that isn't reason enough to honor Lawson by never saying the word "microwave" correctly ever again, then what is‽‽