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    • Join Date: Sep 2006
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    #1

    Question Cut the mustard?

    My dictionary says "cut the mustard":
    Come up to expectations; reach the required standard.

    I'm trying to use this idiom in the following paragraph:
    I guess the hardest part is that your parents expect too much from you. (At least this is my case) Sometimes it's really hard to cut the mustard...

    Is it correctly used? Is it outdated?

    Thanks!


    • Join Date: Sep 2006
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    #2

    Re: Cut the mustard?

    Look here, maybe you'll find the answer

    http://dictionary.reference.com/brow...0the%20mustard

    best regards

  1. BobK's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Cut the mustard?

    Quote Originally Posted by ksequen View Post
    .
    .
    .
    I guess the hardest part is that your parents expect too much from you. (At least this is my case) Sometimes it's really hard to cut the mustard...
    Is it correctly used? Is it outdated?
    Thanks!
    I haven't followed the link, but to my ear it's not at all out-dated.

    b


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    #4

    Re: Cut the mustard?

    It's fine to use, but beware. There are English language instructors who take it upon themselves, (in my experience it was usually at the high school senior or college freshman level) to discourage use of many idiomatic expressions and popular metaphors by marking every one they find in a paper. They are not firmly against their use, but many young writers do tend to use them excessively for "color", as a substitute for style and clarity.

    "Cut the mustard" is not necessarily bad usage. Everyone would understand it's meaning. But unless you were using it ironically or humorously in a college level paper, your instructor would probably make some comment in the margins. This is true of many idioms as often they are regarded as cliches. Look up the definitions of trite and cliche. That will explain this a little further.
    Last edited by wsemajb; 27-Sep-2006 at 23:58.


    • Join Date: Sep 2006
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    #5

    Re: Cut the mustard?

    Better late than never...

    Thanks guys!

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