This nice malaphor was heard on Season 1 Episode 2 of Cold Case Files; “Killing on Christmas Eve”.
22:39 into episode. Video is below. It’s a congruent conflation of “back to square one” and “ground zero”, both meaning starting place or at the beginning. This is a bookend of a previous posting, “starting from ground one”, posted in 2012. https://malaphors.com/2012/11/07/starting-from-ground-one/. Both idioms have numbers – zero and one – contributing to the confusion. many thanks to Mike Ameel for hearing this one, sharing it, and sending me the video to prove it! This is not fake news, folks.
Wonderful mash up of “ground zero” (starting point or central point) and “from square one” (at the beginning or starting point). Both idioms have similar meanings and zero and one are numbers so probably the reasons for the confusion.