Yahoo! Picks, the irony-deficient Official Barometer of What’s New and Cool on the Web, recently officially re-discovered The Cliché Rotation Project, one of Michael “Defective Yeti” Baldwin’s greatest contributions to culture, as well as a cool tool for those like myself, lazy writers who wish to write more while remaining lazy.
By coming up with fresh, novel turns-of-phrase to replace old overused ones…
“Looks a gift horse in the mouth?” Cliché. “Wants birthday cake on Christmas” Hooray!
“It’s a win-win situation?” Outdated. “Everyone gets ice cream!” Innovated!
“Looking for a needle in a haystack?” Aw, come on! “Trying to find a clock in a casino,” Awesome!
“More fun than a barrel of monkeys?” Yawn. “More fun than 20 yards of bubble wrap” Right On!
“You made your bed, now sleep in it?” Expired. “You poop it, you scoop it,” Inspired!
“He’s yesterday’s news?” (damn, I’ve run out of good rhyming antonyms – whatever) “He’s a stamp-licker!”
“We’ll cross that bridge when we come to it?” “We’ll chop that tomato when the salsa runs out!”
“If you can’t stand the heat, get out of the kitchen?” “If you won’t shake your bootie, get off the dance floor!” (not as good as a parallel as most, but still. totally awesome)
No prejudgers of the validity of a cliché, Baldwin and company provide replacements for contradictory concepts that just show even better how contradictory they are!
“Still waters run deep?” “Quiet squirrels have more nuts!”
“The squeaky wheel gets the grease?” “The squeaky dolphin gets the fish!”
I know what you’re thinking. Replacing chichés is just “reinventing the wheel”… which is itself a cliché they have a replacement for! “Starting a whole new batch of sourdough” (you may need to be from certain parts of the USofA to fully understand that, but it is PERFECT).
Disclosure: I considered making up a site all about clichés in the past; even got a domain name for it ClicheStadium.com (since abandoned). For a while I even thought about staging cliché fights in the ‘stadium’… “two clichés go in, only one comes out” (which is itself a cliché).
So, now that I’ve copies all the best of The Cliché Rotation Project, am I going to contribute any of my own? Hey, I already admitted I’m a lazy writer, but here goes…
“Have your cake and eat it too?” “Use your laptop and keep the battery charged”
“The light at the end of the tunnel is the headlight of a train?” “The last three words in the book are “to be continued…”
“The Pen is mightier than the sword?” “Bytes of data are more powerful than the waves carrying them.” (Hey, I like that one! And I just thunk it up! I’m going to quit while I’m ahead… or “cash out before the bubble bursts”)