Congratulations Coach Reid! You finally got the hump off of your back

This malaphor was tweeted by former NFL player Brian Dawkins (safety for the Philadelphia Eagles):

@BrianDawkins
CONGRATULATIONS COACH REID!! You finally got the hump off of your back. You have been a blessing to so many of us as a Coach yes, but also as a man. You’ve learned & given so much to so many… You Earned it!! LOVE YOU!!! #BigRed #SuperBowlChampion
This is a congruent conflation of “over the hump” and “monkey off (one’s) back”, both meaning to get over a persistent problem.  The speaker may have been thinking of a “hump back”, or perhaps a “hunchback”, but I don’t recall Coach Reid with one.  When I received this malaphor, I immediately thought of Igor (Marty Feldman) from the movie Young Frankenstein who deliberately swapped which side the hump on his back was located, saying, “What hump?”  A big thanks to Jim Kozlowski, loyal Eagles fan, for spotting this gem.

I have a job underneath the books

This was heard at an administrative hearing.  The speaker was talking about work that he was currently performing.  It is a congruent conflation of “off the books” and “under the table”, both meaning to do something in secret so that taxes won’t be paid.  Then again, maybe the speaker works in the basement of a library.  A follow up question hopefully was made.  A big thanks to John Costello for hearing this one.

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How many cracks at the apple is this guy going to get?

This one was overheard in a conversation between a lawyer and the judge in a court proceeding.   This is a nice congruent conflation of “a second bite of the apple” and “cracks at the bat”, both meaning additional opportunities.  “Take a crack at (something)” (an attempt) is probably also in the mix.  Perhaps the speaker was thinking of William Tell or maybe a pinata party.  Kudos to Matin Pietrucha who heard this one and sent it in.


A little bit of a tightrope that the Democrats have to run

This mashup was uttered by Frank Thorp V on MSNBC last Saturday.  It is a conflation of “walk a tightrope” (be in a situation where one must be extremely cautious) and “run the gauntlet” (enduring a series of problems, threats, or criticisms).  “Running” and “walking” might have led to the speaker’s confusion, or perhaps in the end the Democrats really had to run across that tightrope!  A big thanks to Frank King who heard this one and ran it in.

We’ve never sought to depose every witness under the face of the sun

Adam Schiff, House Manager in the Trump Impeachment Trial, uttered this in response to the President’s counsel’s comment that witnesses would be endless and that the trial could drag on until the next election.  Here is the context and the quote:

Taking up additional witnesses “could be done very quickly, effectively, we’ve never sought to depose every witness under the face of the sun,” Schiff later added, noting that a select four witnesses have been specified by House managers as “particularly appropriate and relevant” to their case.

https://www.ntd.com/impeachment-trial-live-updates-final-day-of-qa-before-vote-on-witnesses_429541.html

This is a terrific congruent conflation of ” everything under the sun” and “on the face of the earth”, both meaning all things in existence, or everything one can reasonably imagine.  The speaker apparently was thinking of the earth and the sun at the same time.  A big thanks to Bruce Ryan for hearing this one and sending it in.  Bruce has the ears of a hawk.


He was taken to the carpet

Senator Mike Braun, Republican from Indiana, uttered this one on Meet the Press yesterday.  He was talking about Trump and the effect impeachment will have on him.  It is a mashup of “called on the carpet” (to reprimand someone) and “taken to the cleaners” (to swindle someone or to soundly defeat someone).  My guess is that the Senator was thinking of carpet cleaning.  He also may have been thinking of the idiom “taken to the mat”(to confront or argue with someone), given mats and carpets are both floor coverings.  A big thanks to Elaine Hatfield and Mike Kovacs who heard this one and sent it in.


That ought to hit the ticket

This was said, referring to something that should be successful.  It is a congruent conflation of “hit the mark” and “punch (one’s) ticket”, both meaning an action that leads to success (the latter to a promotion usually).  Hit the ticket has a nice ring to it.  A big thanks to Martin Pietrucha for texting this one and realizing it was a malaphor.


You hit it right off the park

This was heard on a conference call.  This is a nice baseball metaphor mashup of “hit it out of the park” (to do something successful or an outstanding achievement) and “right off the bat” (immediately, without delay).  Now if the person had hit it right off the bat and out of the park that would be an immediate outstanding achievement, right?  Or just a home run?  By the way, it seems like hitting it out of the park is a favorite idiom to mashup.  A few past examples for your reading pleasure are “we really nailed it  out of the park” https://malaphors.com/2015/08/18/we-really-nailed-it-out-of-the-park/ and “they blew it out of the park” https://malaphors.com/2012/10/27/they-blew-it-out-of-the-park/   A big thanks to Mike Kovacs for hearing this one and sending it in right off the park to malaphor central.


Facebook is a bubble chamber

The “Great Malaphor Hunter”, Mike Kovacs, uttered this one at lunch the other day.  He was talking about Facebook posts and how people don’t engage in actual discussions with others with opposing views.  This is a nice mashup of “live in a bubble” (separated from society or sheltered) and “echo chamber” (a metaphorical description of a situation in which beliefs are amplified or reinforced by communication and repetition inside a closed system). When I heard this, I immediately thought of Get Smart and the “cone of silence”.  A big thanks to Anthony Kovacs for outting his Dad, malaphorically speaking.

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I was elected to “Clean the Swamp”

This was uttered by President Trump in a December 5, 2019 tweet.  Here it is:

..trial in the Senate, and so that our Country can get back to business. We will have Schiff, the Bidens, Pelosi and many more testify, and will reveal, for the first time, how corrupt our system really is. I was elected to “Clean the Swamp,” and that’s what I am doing!

Trump’s mantra has always been “drain the swamp”, so I believe this is a malaphor, conflating “drain the swamp” with “clean house”, both meaning to wipe out corruption or inefficiency.   A big thanks to Sandor Kovacs for spotting this one and sending it in.