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What's-his-clutch

A discussion of slang and the changes it undergoes.

What's-his-clutch

Postby dsteve54 » Thu Jul 08, 2010 5:57 am

I can understand the self-documenting terms

"what's-his-face/what's-her-face";
"what's-his-name/what's-her-name";
"what-d'ya-call-him/what-d'ya-call-her" (or 'words' to that effect)
,
but why, in the same vein, do we say
"What's-his-clutch/what's-her-clutch"
???

[ Once again, I was trying to explain this to someone from a foreign country......??clutch?? ]

.....I should qualify to say that at least "we" say it in Kansas; it could be the case that it is a rural term.

I could envision "clutch" as having maybe a lewd meaning. But my tendency is to think of "clutch" as being associated with a machine. For instance, I could see, in particular, some rube referring to a person like he/she was a tractor.
Or maybe "clutch" could be associated with something that allows something else to "go", so maybe it could be associated with a "heart", yet we don't say "what's-his-heart/ what's-his-noggin, etc. I have really only heard the above variations and somehow "clutch" seems to be the odd-man-out. The others are fairly evident.

Those are the only ideas I can logically derive, but there is probably some obscure story behind it that is far afield from that.
Known in restaurant circles by quasi-Thai moniker, "That Guy" (e.g. heard in the back.."that guy is here again"; "that guy on/at table 10"; "that guy is going for a sirloin again", etc.)

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Postby Slava » Thu Jul 08, 2010 10:11 am

I'd agree that it's local. I've never heard it here in Upstate NY. I wouldn't even say it's rural, as this is farm country, too.

Good luck tracking down the origins. As far as explaining it to foreigners, just tell them it has no real explanation as it's an idiom.
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What's-his-clutch

Postby Dr. Goodword » Thu Jul 08, 2010 5:06 pm

I've never heard it here in Pennsylvania, central North Carolina, where I'm from and my sister's still live, or in Colorado, where my kids and grandkids reside. It doesn't make sense. Idioms like this one start out as metaphors but clutch has never been a metaphor of "name" or "face" to my knowledge.
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Re: What's-his-clutch

Postby Slava » Thu Jul 08, 2010 5:24 pm

Dr. Goodword wrote:...where I'm from and my sister's still live,....
For shame Dr. G! Lynne Truss would be most upset with you. :shock:
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Postby dsteve54 » Fri Jul 09, 2010 7:50 am

{...never heard....}

+

{....never heard....}....Dr. G.

Ok, well, I certainly did not make up the phraseology myself, that is for sure. It apparently is said in some parts of the country, though I do not know boundaries. But fair enough, thanks for comments.

Well, I had these so-called 'clutch' phrases, among the others I mentioned, as possibilities in a list of English translations of
"как(-/ )(бишь/)(-/ )[его/её/их](-/ )(там)". However, now it appears that they are too rare in general usage to be legitimate translations. So I have simply removed those references from the list of possible translations.
Known in restaurant circles by quasi-Thai moniker, "That Guy" (e.g. heard in the back.."that guy is here again"; "that guy on/at table 10"; "that guy is going for a sirloin again", etc.)

Half the distance in half the states...from half2run.com
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