Clich?s should be avoided like the plague. That goes without saying, at the end of the day.
Of course, the football world is riddled with them, from sick parrots to stalls being set out and giving it 110%.
And at Norwich, we attract more than our fair share, with headlines like 'So tweet for chirpy Canaries' and 'Delia's recipe for success'. She must be as fed up with that one as a tall bloke continually being asked: 'What's the weather like up there..?'
But there are three clich?s in particular which I really can't stand any more, and it's time they were shown the red card.
(Sorry, that's another one, isn't it? How about 'suspended sine die'?)
The first is 'Football's a funny old game'.
This phrase started to grate the third or fourth time it was repeated on the 'Saint and Greavsie' show. If you're too young to remember the programme, ask? No, don't bother. But my real gripe with it is that it's utterly redundant; it just states the bleedin' obvious.
Every week, every day there are surprises and things which make no sense. A few recent examples:
(1) The recall of Emile Heskey to the England squad. Apparently you could have knocked him down with a feather when he heard the news ? a phenomenon which usually only occurs when he enters a penalty area.
(2) Robert Green saved a penalty in West Ham's 3-0 win at Reading. I'll just repeat that, to let the startling news sink in if you were unaware of it and to bump up my word count: Robert Green saved a penalty.
(3) Having signed 12 players during the summer and led Leicester to a 4-1 victory over promotion favourites Watford, Martin Allen was promptly sacked by Milan Mandaric, who is now looking for his fourth manager at the club since he took over in February. Anyone still wishing he'd approached Norwich with his millions?
(4) Jay-Jay Okocha has joined Hull City, claiming that his move there was ordained by God. If this is true, it strikes me that He is not so much moving in a mysterious way as having a laugh. He's got previous, too: a couple of years ago, He suggested to Taribo West that joining Plymouth would be a good idea.
Clich? number two on my hitlist is Bill Shankly's comment about football being more important than life or death.
This is widely and lazily used by people who know next to nothing about football; if they did, they would be aware of how fed up real fans are with hearing it. You could say it's football's equivalent of 'To be or not to be..' – it's the quotation that everyone knows.
A few years ago, I took part in a presentation to a company connected to the football world. A colleague began with his PowerPoint presentation (ironic, given that it had neither power nor point…) and sure enough, the first screen had the Shankly quote on it.
I couldn't stop myself from slapping my forehead in exasperation; fortunately this went unnoticed, as the people from the company were busy banging their heads on the table. I suspect that this was not the first presentation they had attended which had started in this way. Not surprisingly, we didn't get the business.
The main problem with this clich?, however, is that it is obviously not true. I'm sure that Shankly had his tongue in his cheek when he said it, just as when he declared that there were two great teams in Liverpool ? “Liverpool and Liverpool reserves”. But too many people have taken it too seriously.
My first encounter with death and bereavement which didn't involve a pet was connected to football. The teenage brother of a classmate at Costessey Junior School collapsed and died in the middle of a game, and I still remember how terrible it all was.
The reminders that life and death are more important than football have kept coming over the years. Bradford, Heysel, Hillsborough, Bryan Gunn's daughter Francesca, the Gabon air disaster which wiped out the Zambian national team, Marc-Vivien Fo?.
The last few weeks have seen the deaths of four players – Ray Jones of QPR, Antonio Puerta of Sevilla, Anton Reid (a 16-year-old apprentice at Walsall) and Chaswe Nsofwa (who played for Hapoel Beersheba in Israel) ? plus the near-death of Leicester's Clive Clarke, whose heart twice stopped beating.
To this sad list we may even add Holly Wells, Jessica Chapman, Rhys Jones and – potentially, alas – Madeleine McCann. The most-published photographs of each of these poor children show them wearing their favourite football shirts.
Seriously, let's not use that Shankly quote again.
The third clich? that needs binning is 'Football is the new rock 'n' roll!'
It's not that there is no similarity between the two, with all the money for nothing, chicks for free and tales of sordid goings-on in hotel rooms. It's the 'X is the new Y' phrase that gets on my nerves.
You know, 'Brown is the new black…', 'Staying in is the new going out…', 'Chris Martin is the new Chris Sutton…' and so on.
It's rarely a happy event when football and music meet, though, and the latest evidence of this is the shortlist of songs for City to run out to. I suspect that the Ipswich-supporting Rob Chandler at Radio Broadland may have had a mischievous hand in drawing up the final six.
We're supposed to choose between the Proclaimers' 500 Miles (which brings to mind comedians with mobility problems), Kasabian's Club Foot (mobility problems again), We Will Rock You by Queen (lame in a different way), Survivor's Eye of the Tiger (wrong sport), the Fratellis' Chelsea Dagger (wrong club), and Blitzkrieg Bop by the Ramones (with its reference to military tactics used by Hitler and the lyric: 'Shoot 'em in the back now').
And yes, I did send in a suggestion of my own, but it was ignored.
I'm gutted, obviously.
And finally? Ipswich chairman David Sheepshanks has just been appointed chairman of a company which helps clean sewers throughout the Anglian Water region.
It will, I trust, be a 'hands-on' role.