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It struck a heart string with many

This beauty comes from a Fox News article about Wendy’s employees making a blind couple’s eating experience a good one.  The article states that “it struck a heart string with many.”  This is a congruent conflation of “strike a chord” and “tug at (one’s) heart strings”, both meaning to elicit a strong emotional response to something.  “Tugging” and “striking” are action words touching something and are probably the source of the mix up.  Certainly one can make “chords” with “strings”, and perhaps the author was thinking of “cords” instead of “chords” as cords are strings.  This is a classic malaphor.  A big thanks to Margaret Grover for spotting this one and sending it in.

I have heard my malaphor book, “He Smokes Like a Fish and other Malaphors”, available on Amazon, has struck many a heart string.  You can get it now for a cheap $6.99 (normally $7.99). https://www.amazon.com/dp/0692652205

 

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