Recent hearings (compare "hearings" to "sightings"):
1. In reference to snow: "...but it isn't laying." Conversation in EastTennessee. "Laying" was used where I would use "sticking": the falling snow was melting, and thus not sticking to (or on) the ground.
2. "Heart-wrenching" (probably for "heart-rending.") Legitimate usage?
3. "Merge them together." TV commentator, who can be praised, I suppose,for not saying "separate them apart."
4. "Keep the dialogue box open." Another TV commentator. I rather likethis phrase. Have you heard it?
5. "If people are pregnant..." TV interview. So: Is pregnancy no longerlimited to females? The man and woman who declare "we're pregnant" have they, or someone like them, proved that both halves of their couplehood are carrying unborn young within their bodies? I'm doubtful, but admittedly I don't keep up with human reproduction breakthroughs. (I think other comments about pregnant "people" arose not too long ago in AUE.)
6. "An entire crowd of citizens." TV commentator. An entire crowd isbetter, no doubt, than a partial crowd.
7. "Rush to judgment." Hundreds nay, thousands of people have beenusing this term way too often in recent years. Am I prejudging them or otherwise judging them unfairly when I say that tired-though-trendy(1) phrases come tripping too easily off their tongues?

(1) Note that "rush to judgment" had a good run in the 1960s; it's hardly new.
Maria Conlon,
who does realize that live TV can leave even the most lucid among us thinking "I can't believe I said that" and praying "Please, God, let me just disappear."
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Recent hearings (compare "hearings" to "sightings"): 1. In reference to snow: "...but it isn't laying." Conversation in East Tennessee. "Laying" was used where I would use "sticking": the falling snow was melting, and thus not sticking to (or on) the ground.

In the UK, I think the more common expression would be "settling".
2. "Heart-wrenching" (probably for "heart-rending.") Legitimate usage?

A concatenation of "heart-rending" and "gut-wrenching", perhaps?

(Welcome back, Toots.)

Laura
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Welcome back Grandma Conlon. Missed ya.
7. "Rush to judgment." Hundreds nay, thousands of people have been using this term way too often in recent years. Am I prejudging them or otherwise judging them unfairly when I say that tired-though-trendy(1) phrases come tripping too easily off their tongues?

You are probably prejudging them, but not unfairly.
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Recent hearings (compare "hearings" to "sightings"): 1. In reference to snow: "...but it isn't laying." Conversation in East Tennessee. "Laying" ... falling snow was melting, and thus not sticking to (or on) the ground. 2. "Heart-wrenching" (probably for "heart-rending.") Legitimate usage?

Seems to me it's "gut-wrenching" applied to a different organ.
3. "Merge them together." TV commentator, who can be praised, I suppose, for not saying "separate them apart." 4. "Keep ... keep up with human reproduction breakthroughs. (I think other comments about pregnant "people" arose not too long ago in AUE.)

I've always been appreciative that you women have been so nice as to carry our half along with yours.
6. "An entire crowd of citizens." TV commentator. An entire crowd is better, no doubt, than a partial crowd. 7. ... the most lucid among us thinking "I can't believe I said that" and praying "Please, God, let me just disappear."

dg (domain=ccwebster)
In our last episode,
, the lovely and talented Maria Conlon broadcast on alt.usage.english:
2. "Heart-wrenching" (probably for "heart-rending.") Legitimate usage?

Very common in these parts (Texas). Of course it is figurative; but then so is "heart-rending." "Wrench" is also very common for physical injuries which might else where be called "strains" or "sprains," and especially for those presumably caused by some rotational motion. I don't believe "heart-wrenching" is a mistaken hearing of some other expression. I think it is derived directly from its parts.

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Recent hearings (compare "hearings" to "sightings"): 1. In reference to snow: "...but it isn't laying." Conversation in East Tennessee. "Laying" was used where I would use "sticking": the falling snow was melting, and thus not sticking to (or on) the ground.

Snow 'lying' is common enough, but laying..???
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Recent hearings (compare "hearings" to "sightings"): 1. In reference to snow: "...but it isn't laying." Conversation in East Tennessee. "Laying" was used where I would use "sticking": the falling snow was melting, and thus not sticking to (or on) the ground.

"Sticking" is what I grew up with in the North of England
2. "Heart-wrenching" (probably for "heart-rending.") Legitimate usage?

Nope. "heart rending" is da bomb.
3. "Merge them together." TV commentator, who can be praised, I suppose, for not saying "separate them apart."

At a stretch, there are two types of merger - genuine amalgamation and takeover of A by B. So yer commentator might be emphasising the former. Not that I would object if you sprang over and smacked him / her with a sock full of sugar.
4. "Keep the dialogue box open." Another TV commentator. I rather like this phrase. Have you heard it?

Nope. It's OK
5. "If people are pregnant..." TV interview. So: Is pregnancy no longer limited to females?

In some species I believe so. "If females are pregnant" includes much of the animal kingdom. But I agree, "If women are pregnant" should be the first choice. Or even "When women are pregnant".
6. "An entire crowd of citizens." TV commentator. An entire crowd is better, no doubt, than a partial crowd.

Sounds folksy to me.
7. "Rush to judgment." Hundreds nay, thousands of people have been using this term way too often in recent years. Am I prejudging them or otherwise judging them unfairly when I say that tired-though-trendy(1) phrases come tripping too easily off their tongues?

Tending to cliche now. But what isn't?

John Dean
Oxford
Recent hearings (compare "hearings" to "sightings"): 1. In reference to ... melting, and thus not sticking to (or on) the ground.

In the UK, I think the more common expression would be "settling".

In the Bristol, England, area and some of South Wales they say "pitching".

Mike.
Recent hearings (compare "hearings" to "sightings"): 1. In reference to ... melting, and thus not sticking to (or on) the ground.

"Sticking" is what I grew up with in the North of England

This side of the Pennines (you originate from Manchester, If I remember correctly), I have heard only "laying". That is also what I grew up with in the Midlands (Leamington Spa).
( ... cut ... ) 7. "Rush to judgment." Hundreds ... that tired-though-trendy(1) phrases come tripping too easily off their tongues?

Tending to cliche now. But what isn't?

That is the way of all excellent phrases. "Economical with the truth" was an excellent phrase when invented and used for the first time by a fine humorist(1). Unfortunately, it has since been taken over by a multitude of lesser wits, and has become a cliché. We have now all heard the joke before.

"Rush to judgement" is another excellent phrase, not for any inherent wit, but because it is concise. How else would you present the same idea, without ambiguity, in three or less words? There is a great difference between (a) re-telling ad nauseam somebody else's joke to present it as your own, and (b) adopting a ready-made phrase, both concise and precise, to keep your text as short as possible. For this reason, I do not consider that "rush to judgement" qualifies as a cliché. To me, it is a legitimate phrase that we all can use with a clear conscience.
(1) Original authorship of this phrase is in dispute between Britain and America. We had a thread about it a couple of years ago on aue. The first time we heard the phrase in Britain was about 15 years ago, when one MP accused another, in Parliament, of being economical with the truth. But American contributors to aue claimed that one of their politicians had used the same phrase at least 10 years before that.
Richard Chambers Leeds UK.
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