Newspaper writers learn early on to use simple words and terminology in their reports — to avoid tired old clichés, hackneyed phrases and the latest jargon of the month.
When it comes to presenting the facts, we are taught to “cut to the chase” — whoops! — I just fell into the trap myself, maybe because these phrases seem to crop up no matter how many times we “go the extra mile.”
Darn! — did it again.
Anyhow, although I inadvertently and unwittingly find myself going down the slippery slope with this kind of language from time to time, it is a perennial pet peeve of mine. I do believe in economy of words and being straightforward in the communication process — people saying what they mean without a lot of cryptology.
Doing otherwise really gets under my skin (can’t help it — and what does “getting under your skin” actually mean, anyway)?
My dedication to this crusade goes back to October 2011, when I penned a Saturday column lamenting people’s use of clichés. I don’t expect you dear readers to remember that piece, but I took aim at trendy ridiculous sayings such as “more bang for the buck,” “getting everyone on the same page” and “thinking outside the box.”
I did not succeed in my mission to have these phrases banished from the face of the Earth — not only do they still survive with great gusto, my list of detestable clichés has only grown over the past six years or so.
Once again I was reminded of this sad state of affairs a couple of mornings ago while listening to a member of Congress, Rep. Doug Collins (R-Ga.), talk on a C-SPAN show.
Now I didn’t know Mr. Collins…
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