Jeanette Sekan
Jeanette Sekan
By Jeanette Sekan
The Cody (Wyo.) Enterprise
HCP columnist

Clichés. I was reminded how prevalent the use of clichés has become, or I’m just now noticing, and it’s been that way since the dawn of time.

It struck me as I was struggling to jot notes in my Christmas cards that any witty or exotic things to report for the last year just weren’t coming to me. I caught myself muttering and writing stuff that no one would find interesting.

Not that my life is a wild whirlwind of non-stop excitement. And, unlike most who post their daily routine with great fanfare on social media, I’m not one to blabber on about what I have for breakfast or that it’s time to give the dogs a flea dip.

My life is not unlike most … work, chores, reading, watching sports and other mindless entertainment, worrying, and planning stuff. In other words … routine. I’m missing the gene that many have today to share those mundane tasks in excruciating detail.

I want to stay in touch, even once a year, with friends and family who are important to me, just not part of my day to day life. But I realized as I was grasping to sound interesting and newsy, I was writing a few well-worn clichés.

Then, with no surprise at all, I started thinking about clichés. In my vague recollections from long ago English classes and a couple of writing courses, I remember that clichés were to be avoided at all costs, since it was Exhibit A for lack of original thought.

It was the lazy person’s way to express an opinion or point of view. As I contemplated this, and juxtaposed some of the craziness going on in the world today, it seems like clichés may be in vogue. Why not? Everything else is upside down.

While clichés highlight the unoriginal, one of the strange facts about clichés is that there’s usually some truth imbedded somewhere. Otherwise, they wouldn’t be clichés.

I realized I use clichés quite a bit when I’m talking. Actually, I talk a lot to BeBe and Toby, so they don’t care. When I think about my verbal interactions with others, I have a hunch it’s peppered with clichés.

Maybe in this new dimension of lies being acceptable and facts not mattering much, one finds a bit of solace in some old familiar phrases. It’s sorta like a nostalgia trip, trying to find some sort of equilibrium.

Do any of these ring a bell in your life?

• Actions speak louder than words.

• The apple doesn’t fall far from the tree.

• Ignorance is bliss.

• What goes around comes around.

• Smart as a whip, dumb as a box of rocks.

• All hat, no cattle.

• It’s the best thing since sliced bread.

• Don’t bite the hand that feeds you.

• Cleanliness is next to godliness.

• I’ll cross that bridge when I come to it.

There’s a myriad of clichés we all use. If the mood strikes, you may want to do a little research. Most clichés have a historical context that may prove interesting.

It truly is a small world, and all the nutty things happening today is beyond the pale.