lost clichés


My latest band is the Lost Clichés, although I'm having some difficulties with the accent. It really has to be there, but it's often omitted.

To give you some idea about what that means, here's a link to a list of cliches- 681 of them. (see, you didn't even miss the accent there, did you?) It's all things like "a penny saved is a penny earned" and "you're the boss". They're very dull, by definition.

Now, what I have in mind about the band is that there must be thousands of musical cliches that haven't been used to the point of being dull. I mean, with language, as a "turn of phrase" is "catching on" there may be a point where it falls from use and vanishes- or, it may be that there are thousands of things that would become clichés except that they hadn't even been thought of.

I sat down this morning and made a list of lost clichés, one for each letter of the alphabet. These are analogous to the songs the band will make- they are like songs and riffs and melodies you've heard too often, only they're fresh.

(editor's note: some folks may find these "lost clichés" confusing on their own, so add some definitions. To see the list with the definitions, click here)

A
actually, they're bigger (the lost cliché response to "they look like ants," said when people are seen from a high place)

B
been husking corn (doing the same thing over and over for so long that you've grown callused)

C
can't hire a clown (the essence of clowning is freedom, so you can contract them but you'll never force them to do their best work for a wage)

D
dig a little, dig a lot (there's no such thing as "a little digging")

E
every look's good as another (the counter argument to that "first impressions" cliché)

F
fuck it, we're here now (genuine lost cliché, credit Stuart family, when you're in a bar on a slow night and someone suggests trying a different place)

G
going planters (Planters nuts, obviously)

H
have heaven (when someone asks you how it's goin')

I
in chestnuts (when someone asks you how it's goin')

J
Jacks be Aces ("it's all the same to me")

K
keys don't match (substitute for "one brick shy the load")

L
laughing with a hat (you LOL, then notice that no one else is laughing)

M
miller's chances (something is guaranteed gonna happen)

N
naught flies free (multiple interpretations)

O
original mellow (very relaxed)

P
played princes (that thing where the rich guy exchanges roles with the poor guy who looks just like him)

Q
quote the barker (a line of bull)

R
raven's haven (rat's nest)

S
sat lately? (friendly greeting)

T
trimmed to two (when making a "small adjustment" amounts to dividing something in half)

U
up less (sleeping a lot)

V
vanity hazard (clothes or a haircut that make you look much too hot)

W
when wishing, cast out (folk wisdom, variously interpreted)

X
X makes three (it is unclear what will be needed to complete this project)

Y
you with hammers (a compliment)

Z
zero to Nero (the Joker syndrome)

The band has just finished mixing a song called Osaka by Midnight. It's a lost cliché from the jazz-rock era.