Say it ain't so, Joe!

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Say it ain't so, Joe!

Used to express one's disbelief, disappointment, or grief upon learning some unfortunate truth about someone or something. A reference to the headline of a newspaper article alleging (incorrectly) that baseball player Joe Jackson had admitted to helping fix the 1919 World Series. This same phrase was later attributed (also incorrectly) to a child fan of Jackson's, who was said to have said it to Jackson outside of the courthouse before Jackson confirmed the accusation to the child and other fans. A: "You do realize that all the clothes in this store are made by children in sweatshops in third-world countries, right?" B: "Say it ain't so, Joe! But they offer such good prices, how are we supposed to resist that?" A: "I just heard that the actor you like was arrested for drug trafficking." B: "No, say it ain't so, Joe! I always looked up to him as a role model—I can't believe he would be involved with crime like that!""
See also: say

Say it ain't so, Joe

Your admitting your mistake would break my heart. “Shoeless” Joe Jackson was involved in the “Black Sox” baseball scandal in which eight Chicago White Sox players were accused of fixing the 1919 World Series. Legend has it that as Jackson was leaving the courthouse, a young fan tugged on his sleeve and, in a voice full of emotion, said, “Say it ain't so, Joe.” When Jackson confirmed the accusation, the lad realized that his idol had feet of clay.
See also: joe, say