Ancora sui cliché

Like many people with family for whom English is not their first language, I’ve always had a soft spot for clichés. Or a mushy place, as someone might say. A relative of mine terms someone behaving strangely a “weird chicken” (from “odd bird”), and when something is exceptionally great or exceptionally inappropriate we say it is “totally out of the water.” I think this is a crashing together of “out of the ballpark” with “out of bounds” with “fish out of water.” All fish out of water are beloved among us. And without the water of clichés, how would we ever recognize these aqueous exiles? Rivka Galchen, nyt.

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