“It’s time to start the 2010 meeting of Club Cliché,” President Bottom Line said, rapping the gavel. As quick as a wink and as cool as the other side of the pillow, the members took their seats. “I see some old threadbare friends are in attendance. There’s Above My Pay Grade and A Work in Progress.” “They’re as stale as day old bread,” said Thrown Under the Bus. Bottom Line continued: “Since our last meeting our executive committee has decided to form sub-groups of like-molded clichés. That way, your mind-numbing overuse won’t cause nausea to everyone else.” “For example?” asked Perfect Storm. “The Great Recession gave us several dog-eared expressions. Indeed, the Great Recession itself is a nominee. No one could call it the Great Depression. We already had that. So now our unfortunate economic situation is being called the Great Recession. Again and again and again. Gag me with a spoon. But it has spawned Too Big to Fail, Clawback, Stress Test, Shovel Ready, Skin in the Game, Wall Street to Main Street and, perhaps the most overworked of all, Double Down.” “I’m already sick of them,” said Comprehensive Immigration Reform. “Speaking of you,” said its evil twin, Come Out of the Shadows, “exactly what does your meaningless, bland name actually represent? Are you for, against or more of the same?” “No one knows, so I’m all things to all people,” said Comprehensive Immigration Reform. “I’ve got a nomination for membership,” said Wellness. “Hey,” interrupted Your Worst Nightmare. “Wellness, didn’t you used to be Health? Why the name change?” “Wellness sounds edgy. And, like changing the name of Patagonian Monkfish to Chilean Sea Base, I can charge more. So what about you, Climate Change? Didn’t you used to be Global Warming?” “Yeah, but that was before the blizzard of 2010. Gotta keep evolving, just like Progressives used to be Liberals.” “Any more nominees?” the President asked. “I see we have Street Cred and Glam on the list. Also the Millennial, which is the new but already old made-up title for anyone born in 1981 or after. The Millennial takes over from Generation X, Y and, we must hope, the Metrosexuals. Moving on, we now come to the unpleasant job of drumming out old members who are no longer in vogue. The previous White House administration, being our most rhetorically challenged group in a generation, for a time gave us a gold mine of members. There were Bring It On, Wanted Dead or Alive, Mission Accomplished and Greeted as Liberators. Those were worthy members, beaten to death by their constant use. Then, as time wore on and embarrassment set in, they were dropped like a hot potato.” “Yeah,” said Dropped Like a Hot Potato, “but they really don’t qualify as clichés anymore since today no one would touch them with a 10-foot pole. When was the last time you heard Embolden Our Enemies, Shock and Awe, Compassionate Conservatism and Family Values? I suggest we retire them due to both lack of use and acute humiliation.” “I agree,” said the President. “They are no longer cliches and will be banished to that great shredder in the sky. Now, are there any more nominations for membership?” Who Dat spoke up. “I have two, both generated by the same source: Lamestream Media and Mavericky.” “Excellent nominees,” said Tipping Point. Suddenly the door opened. “Can I come in?” asked Drill, Baby, Drill. He was met by a torrent of thrown epithets. “So I guess you won’t admit Drill Here! Drill Now! either.” Then Drill stalked off. “I have a nominee,” said Teachable Moment. “It’s that worn-out Whac-A-Mole, used time and again in Congress.” Gaming the System looked puzzled. “If we admitted every redundant expression uttered in Washington we’d have to meet in the Grand Canyon.” Jump the Shark spoke up. “Congressmen trot out Whac-A-Mole as an example of hammering down one point and another springs up. It was funny the first 500 times it was used.” Bottom Line nodded. “We have to consider Apps, who was put up for membership by Social Media. Actually, we’re getting several potential members from Social Media, who, itself, was voted in at our last meeting. I see that Buyer’s Remorse and A-List are being nominated by Deal Breaker and Game Changer. We’ve also got some former members that are making a comeback: Canary in a Coalmine, Hunter-Gatherer and Low Hanging Fruit.” The door opened again. “Hi, I’m looking for the meeting of Worn Out Sayings,” said We’re Not in Kansas Anymore. “If you remember, we used to meet with you, but you decided we’re too long to be called a cliché so we formed our own club of overused quotes and dead-tired sayings. The Dog Ate My Homework is our new president. Another tired one, Then the Terrorists Will Have Won, got in, but we rejected the Albert Einstein quote, ‘Insanity: doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results.’ It is woebegone, but still not overused enough.” “Call me crazy, but…,” said Fashionista. “That’s enough,” said the President. “Just remember our creed: avoid clichés like the plague.” Ashby is over-quoted at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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