TUMBY BAY - I’ve had enough! The next person who says, ‘Oh my God!’, ‘Absolutely!’, ‘At the end of the day’, 'The bottom line is …’, ‘Unbelievable!’ or any one of the other overworked clichés that I’ve got stored in my verbal hate locker had better look out.
The same goes for the next person who sends me an email with the acclamation ‘LOL’ at the end. And that goes doubly if it is accompanied by one of those excruciating little circles with a happy face or some other silly symbol in it.
And if any of those people also happens to be wearing a baseball cap the wrong way round, have underpants sticking from the top of their pants or is sucking a lollypop with the stick hanging out of their mouth, who knows what will happen.
Not that I’ve got anything against mindless clichés or silly fads.
Sometimes they can be very useful.
They are a positive boon for intellectually challenged politicians for instance.
Remember union boss turned politician turned mining lobbyist Martin Ferguson? He was amazing. He could string cliché after cliché together in a flat monotone for hours on end. None of it made much sense, but what the hell.
If he was still in politics today he could give the bullet-headed ex-walloper from Queensland, Mutton Dutton, a run for his money with his special brand of clichéd vitriol.
Since Ferguson disappeared into business-land he has become indistinguishable from the rest of the clones. God knows where Dutton is at the moment. Probably trolling through the sewers looking for more shit to smear on innocent people.
And then there are the galahs who continually chant phrases like ‘Stop the boats!’ and ‘Jobs and growth’ when all you want them to do is give you a straight answer to your question. Not only do they constantly regurgitate the same clichés but in their spare time they’re probably inventing new ones.
Then again one of the best cliché makers was old Will Shakespeare. I don’t think he intended to, or maybe the cunning bugger did. He was a consummate political salesman, after all. Look what he did for the cause of Judea.
Maybe I shouldn’t be so harsh. Common language is laced with clichés once just as annoying.
And not just in English.
Even Creole languages like Tok Pisin aren’t immune.
The exclamation ‘laka’ still gets on my nerves in the right setting. And if I hear the term ‘Land of the Unexpected’ one more time I’m likely to throw up. And that one about an ‘island of gold floating in a sea of oil’ ….urgh!
They are really words and phrases overworked through popular use.
Then there are the aberrations.
How many times have you heard a person described as an ‘icon’?
An icon is a religious image, like a painting or statuette usually found in a church.
And why is a person who kicks a winning goal called a ‘hero’?
A hero is someone who has performed a valiant or brave deed. What’s valiant or brave about kicking a pigskin through a couple of upright sticks?
It makes you realise the world has gone truly mad.
In fact, stop the world, I want to get off.