?

Log in

 
 
12 June 2009 @ 07:05 pm
Hey, Americans ...  
Do you ever use forms of cliché other than plain old cliché? Such as clichéd or clichés? I see it used in a manner that I would consider wrong so often that I am wondering if it is one of those wacky idioms that English develops up all around the world. Or it could just be young people today with their emo music and Twittering ...
 
 
 
Azure Jane Lunatic: twitterazurelunatic on June 12th, 2009 09:20 am (UTC)
It's young people. I often whack their knees with my cane as I pass.

Edited at 2009-06-12 09:20 am (UTC)
blamebramptonblamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 09:31 am (UTC)
Oh, BLESS YOU!
Kieran: MARVINfilmatleven on June 12th, 2009 10:08 am (UTC)
I do not use inappropriate forms myself, however I have seen it in abundance. I'm convinced it's either Americanism or, like you said, the youth of the day.

*scratches head and wonders when she stopped considering herself part of that youth* EEP
blamebramptonblamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 01:03 pm (UTC)
You are still young! You are simply not Yoof, because you are sane.
nolagalnolagal on June 12th, 2009 10:20 am (UTC)
Pretty sure it's us wacky Americans with a complete disregard for the English language.

How have you seen it used incorrectly?
blamebramptonblamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 01:04 pm (UTC)
It's seeming as though ditching the d at least is quite acceptable in US English, hence the oft-seen 'That is SO cliché!'

I shall be more gentle in my beta-ing in future!
(no subject) - melusinahp on June 12th, 2009 06:32 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(Deleted comment)
Seshetasesheta_66 on June 12th, 2009 11:32 am (UTC)
Hee! I'm a Canadian of a slightly older generation and both sound right to me too.

However, I shall not be retaking French. :P
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 01:01 pm (UTC) (Expand)
old_enoughold_enough on June 12th, 2009 10:39 am (UTC)
I'm almost 60 and spent the first 40 years in the US and the next 20 in various places in Europe. To my ear it is perfectly OK to say clichéd and clichés, but I have developed a severe allergy to the US "gotten".

That said, there appear to be lots and lots of what I learned as irregular past tense verb forms that are changing to be more regular in their conjugations. I am willing to be flexible on that issue, but have threatened to make several people "gender neutral" if I ever hear them say "drugged" instead of "dragged" again. :)
blamebramptonblamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 01:00 pm (UTC)
Yes, d and s endings would be my natural choice. And gotten is ugly, but I can live with its use given that it follows a straightforward construction that has its roots in Old English. But I do think that it should be considered idiosyncratic usage, as should acclimated. Alas, both are so widespread they are considered US standard.

I strongly agree with you that there are changes afoot in the language, but do feel that some should be stomped on. Drugged should be first set fire to, then the ashes stomped on ;-)
(no subject) - pennswoods on June 12th, 2009 03:11 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 03:14 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - rosathome on June 12th, 2009 06:00 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - drgaellon on June 12th, 2009 11:07 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 13th, 2009 04:21 am (UTC) (Expand)
Shivshiv5468 on June 12th, 2009 11:05 am (UTC)
I've always assumed it was an error brought on by poor diction. Unlike gotten which is just an error. Sniffs. I suggest the use of trite, which avoids the problem.
Seshetasesheta_66 on June 12th, 2009 11:48 am (UTC)
Hee! According to Merriam-Webster, none are considered errors. Gotten is listed as a past-participle of get, and both clichés and clichéd are forms of cliché.

Oxford states the same, though they point out that gotten is North American, and is often regarded as non-standard.
(no subject) - rosathome on June 12th, 2009 11:54 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - sesheta_66 on June 12th, 2009 12:05 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - rosathome on June 12th, 2009 12:07 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 12:56 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - shiv5468 on June 12th, 2009 03:56 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - sesheta_66 on June 15th, 2009 05:15 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - calanthe_fics on June 12th, 2009 06:59 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - sesheta_66 on June 15th, 2009 05:02 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 12:55 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - shiv5468 on June 12th, 2009 02:37 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 02:49 pm (UTC) (Expand)
glorafinglorafin on June 12th, 2009 11:18 am (UTC)
Isn't "clichés" an acceptable plural for "cliché"? If not, it should. :)

As for clichéd, I find the word quite ugly, with that unpronouncable 'éd' at the end. Actuall, I'm not quite sure why one could not use 'cliché' as an adjective. I would have thought that a "cliché story" would be understandable by all, as is "love story" or "horror story". But then again, that possibility of using substantives as adjectives is on of the most puzzling features of the English language, at least for French native speakers.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 12:44 pm (UTC)
Yes, both s and d endings are quite right and are standardised in non-American English usage. American usage seems to allow for the d at least to be left off. The pronunciations in Britglish, AusEnglish and KiwiEnglish all allow for the d quite easily, more so that US English according to my bad fake Yankee accent test.

And from the English English perspective, we do standardise many of the words we appropriate, we like to make them feel at home in the language ;-)
(no subject) - glorafin on June 12th, 2009 04:27 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 04:36 pm (UTC) (Expand)
down the hills and round the bendsnorton_gale on June 12th, 2009 11:20 am (UTC)
I've always said clichéd or clichés. Is it a technically incorrect usage? And if so, why?


blamebramptonblamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 12:37 pm (UTC)
No, quite right. But of course the new problem of why a construction I think means one thing means the opposite to Americans has popped up ;-)
Seshetasesheta_66 on June 12th, 2009 11:38 am (UTC)
Both sound correct to me, and I may have used either or both myself over the years. I've certainly heard (and seen) them both used frequently, and would never have considered either one of them to be wrong. *shrugs*

It's not limited to the young today, though I'll happily accept the young label if you're offering. ;D Perhaps it's just a North American thing, because it's common in Canada too.

Both forms are listed in the Merriam Webster online dictionary also.

I also checked Oxford, which lists clichéd as the adjective. Since it lists cliché as a noun, it makes sense that clichés would be the plural, no?

Edited at 2009-06-12 12:07 pm (UTC)
blamebramptonblamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 12:36 pm (UTC)
Yeah, the d and s endings are what I would automatically use, yet American writers very often discard the d, and quite often the s, too.

And now I have to work out a rule for why the construction of that paragraph can be read with the reverse meaning in the US. My brain is going to melt one day ...
(no subject) - sesheta_66 on June 12th, 2009 01:11 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 01:13 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - shiv5468 on June 12th, 2009 04:56 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 04:57 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - shiv5468 on June 12th, 2009 06:05 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 13th, 2009 04:10 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - shiv5468 on June 13th, 2009 04:17 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - aliciajd on June 12th, 2009 08:05 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - shyfoxling on June 16th, 2009 01:54 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 16th, 2009 05:30 am (UTC) (Expand)
rosathome on June 12th, 2009 11:52 am (UTC)
Oh, that irritates me beyond all reason too. I do see it as part of a wider trend to abandon the past participle for some unaccountable reason. People regularly seem to write things like 'I use to do that...' And particularly in the adjectival form, the -ed ending seems increasingly optional. Poor diction must, I think, have quite a lot to do with this.

But, to be fair with respect to your actual example, I suppose one could make a case for using cliché in its French form, rather than as an Anglicization, in which case you would still have clichés but not clichéd.
rosathome on June 12th, 2009 11:58 am (UTC)
And now, having read the comments, it seems to me that the matter is so far gone that quite a lot of people have been able to interpret your question in completely the opposite way from what I assumed you meant.

My understanding is that (British) English inflects the word cliché to give the adjectival form clichéd and the plural form clichés. This is what I would view as standard. I assumed your question was directed to those (mainly Americans) who use only the form cliché in all situations, even when it is adjectival or plural. But several people seem to have assumed you were asking whether clichéd and clichés were acceptable forms at all.
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 12:10 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 12:22 pm (UTC) (Expand)
suttonwritersuttonwriter on June 12th, 2009 11:57 am (UTC)
Both have been common usage most of my life. And how a word is used determines whether or not it's correct, not what language mavens and English teachers think (believe me, I've tried to stamp out utilize and finally had to give up).
blamebramptonblamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 12:32 pm (UTC)
Oh, I HATE utlise/ze. It is such an ugly word. I always mark it up and ask the writer if they really want to construct a tone that reads as dull Public Service?

And yes, I have been merrily marking up the lack of the d and s as error when beta-ing, but then had the sudden realisation that perhaps it was kosher to use cliché for all three forms after all. And I do not like to stamp on words solely because they are Americanisms, as I would miss kosher, persnickety, and several others far too much. Though aluminum and acclimated can sod off ;-)
(no subject) - suttonwriter on June 12th, 2009 04:06 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 04:10 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - suttonwriter on June 12th, 2009 07:06 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Bryoneybryoneybrynn on June 12th, 2009 12:08 pm (UTC)
I use cliched. Also, I use the accent, I'm just too lazy to figure out how to do it on my keyboard (Word always supplies it for me). That said, I've only ever used it in conversation - I've never used in a paper or something.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 12:16 pm (UTC)
On a Mac, you can do it by typing option + E, then E. Not sure about PCs because I am too much of a wanker to have ever owned one ;-).

Clichéd is quite right, and we have uncovered another area where English construction fails to cross the Atlantic easily.
Pureblood Princessraitala on June 12th, 2009 01:12 pm (UTC)
Just to add to your confusion, I was also not sure whether you were telling me that clichéd and clichés were the constructions you actually had a problem with or not - so it isn't just North Americans who could misread those sentences. Just goes to show that keyboard-English has a WHOLE other set of communication difficulties :)
blamebramptonblamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 01:15 pm (UTC)
I was trying to not impose on them the idea that to leave off the s and d was wrong (regardless of my personal beliefs), while still given the other forms as examples. Perhaps a paragraph break would have helped!
(no subject) - raitala on June 12th, 2009 01:22 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 01:25 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - raitala on June 12th, 2009 01:33 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 01:39 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - raitala on June 12th, 2009 01:44 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 01:48 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Heather: Teddy Bearfaynia on June 12th, 2009 01:28 pm (UTC)
I read your post twice trying to decide if the issue was clichéd vs clichés (neither of which my Firefox spell check appreciates) or with the way we young people tend to bandy it about for everything.

I've decided that the usage works for anything that's at least two months old. Owning an Ipod? Tch, so cliché. XD
blamebramptonblamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 01:31 pm (UTC)
That was in fact what twigged me to the fact that Americans might find the lack of d and s endings perfectly acceptable, when my Firefox spellcheck told me they were wrong. I had the sudden realisation that it could be another They Do Things Differently There moment.

And I adore my iPod, even though it is responsible for me now owning all three volumes of Queen's Greatest Hits ;-)
(no subject) - faynia on June 12th, 2009 01:34 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 01:39 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - faynia on June 12th, 2009 01:42 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 01:47 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - faynia on June 12th, 2009 01:52 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 01:54 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - shyfoxling on June 16th, 2009 01:44 am (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 16th, 2009 05:33 am (UTC) (Expand)
(Deleted comment)
blamebramptonblamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 01:49 pm (UTC)
I think you are right about people using it as they hear it. I recently read petty bourgeoisie used (not as a pun or idiomatic usage) by someone who had clearly heard the term but never seen it written.
(no subject) - rosathome on June 12th, 2009 06:05 pm (UTC) (Expand)
parallel parking prodigyempress_jae on June 12th, 2009 02:38 pm (UTC)
it might have to do with dialect in some cases, and also folks just never having heard the word properly which in turn means they have never been corrected. man, what community was i perusing the other day?...anyway, while trying to make her point, a commenter threw in "intensive purpose" into her rambling. after a couple of WAT? responses from the masses, i finally realized she was trying to say "to all intents and purpose" and decided to gently correct her. in a hissy fit, she said i was wrong, and then an argument broke out after others told her that SHE was in the wrong. i just sat back and palmfaced. youth.

regardless, i like your twittering theory, or as my Finnish boss calls it "twooting"

Edited at 2009-06-12 02:38 pm (UTC)
blamebramptonblamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 02:48 pm (UTC)
HA! Oh dear, yes. Poor lamb, if she hadn't argued, it would have been one of those perfectly understandable mistakes, like the non-punning use of petty bourgeoisie.

And Twooting is BRILLIANT!
Tarataradiane on June 12th, 2009 04:39 pm (UTC)
I hear and see clichéd quite often, but not clichés. It's not one of my favorite words, so I don't typically use it in any form.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on June 12th, 2009 04:43 pm (UTC)
Both d and s endings are fine and standard, but they seem to be disappearing in US English. I am considering mounting a rescue effort ;-)
(no subject) - taradiane on June 12th, 2009 10:47 pm (UTC) (Expand)
The top of the utensil pyramid: misspellingssporkmetender on June 12th, 2009 06:33 pm (UTC)
I must confess to using "gotten" on a fairly regular basis (it's part of an American upbringing, I suppose), but I strenuously object to using "cliché" in place of "clichéd" and "clichés." I have a friend who does it a lot, and it bugs me to death. So I guess I'm some sort of weird hybrid formation :)
blamebramptonblamebrampton on June 13th, 2009 04:13 pm (UTC)
I can accept gotten from Americans even though it's ugly, because it comes from a rational formation. Acclimate is just wacky, though. And hurrah for proper endings!
calanthe_fics on June 12th, 2009 07:01 pm (UTC)
I'm surprised you even have to ask the question, because it's not like we don't know the answer.

:D

And zombies.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on June 13th, 2009 04:16 pm (UTC)
I received a text this evening from a friend to let me know she had found some very fine zombie horses in the artworks of the castle she is visiting. I immediately thought of you.

As it turns out, there are many Americans who still believe in finishing words to mark different usage, this heartens me!
(no subject) - calanthe_fics on June 13th, 2009 04:20 pm (UTC) (Expand)
(no subject) - blamebrampton on June 13th, 2009 04:25 pm (UTC) (Expand)
bare_memabonwitch on June 13th, 2009 02:00 am (UTC)
I am both young and American, but perhaps am no longer "youth" because emo music, Twitter, and incorrect use of the word "cliche" bother me...

blamebramptonblamebrampton on June 13th, 2009 04:18 pm (UTC)
You are still part of the youth, just not the annoying part ;-)
grey_hunter on June 13th, 2009 11:10 am (UTC)
Not American but when I IM with Kes (who is American) and say something like "that's just so cliché" she always corrects me that it's clichéd. *shrugs*
blamebramptonblamebrampton on June 13th, 2009 04:19 pm (UTC)
That's because Kes is a Great Human Being. And you're allowed to say the odd thing wackily ;-)
(no subject) - grey_hunter on June 13th, 2009 06:42 pm (UTC) (Expand)
Mificmific on June 14th, 2009 12:21 am (UTC)
Dangerous to get us going on a grammar thread, as evidenced above!
Clichés and clichéd for me.
The other thing I frequently have to grit my teeth and bear is disinterested used to mean uninterested.
But again, I found a grammar-nerds site which in the end concluded that that battle was lost, in the New World anyway. Which is actually a supermarket chain here.
I'm a hold-out though - I refuse to use disinterested for not interested - and it's not just because my false teeth make the sibilants harder to say these days. ;)
some kind of snark faery: confused (severus ?)shyfoxling on June 16th, 2009 01:07 am (UTC)
"Clichés" is a valid plural noun to me (for example, a list of overused proverbs could be some clichés) and I have been known to use "clichéd" as a descriptor. This is incorrect? I had no idea. It strikes me as another example of our passion for nouning and verbing, TBH.
blamebramptonblamebrampton on June 16th, 2009 05:28 am (UTC)
Both are quite correct! What sounds like an attempt to be unbiased while still providing examples in my English apparently means exactly the opposite to others! And hurrah for upholding different forms when using words in novel ways!