Discussions about eggcorns and related topics
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Chris -- 2011-03-08
As I was walking into the public library the other day, my head swivelled to look at a flyer posted for and event for Grandparents Raising Grandchildren, not just because I know someone who qualifies, but because the event was announced as a Coffee Clutch. The announcement appears on page six here: http://www.wyomingco.net/ofa/newsletter … 202005.pdf
I double-checked to make sure the phrase “kaffee klastch” does not mean “coffee clutch,” to rule out a direct translation. “Klatsch” appears to mean “gossip,” so a translation would be “coffee gossip”,” not “coffee clutch.” The American Heritage definition here includes the version “coffee klatch>” http://www.bartleby.com/61/78/C0457800.html But the idea of a kaffee klatsch being translated into a coffee clutch makes immediate sense, with “clutch” as a term for “gathering” or “group.” As such, I’ve found quite a few on-line references (omitting those wherein apparently cardboard coffee sleeves are referred to as “clutches”) (and don’t even ask about coffee clutch handbags – brown purses, I think), which I do not think are deliberate puns, though some may be misunderstandings or misspellings. http://mass.arizona.edu/sss/SSSCoffeeCl … Clutch.htm
http://hombreblanco.blogspot.com/2004/0 … ts-is.html
http://www.ibiblio.org/usenet-i/groups- … lutch.html
http://detroit.metblogs.com/archives/20 … ffee.phtml
http://www.whispersofhope.com/phpBB2/vi … .php?f=48&
http://www.mysanantonio.com/multimedia/ … ide_6.html
Hey, there’s even a movie!: http://us.imdb.com/title/tt0463945/ (Clearly for language geeks – imdb recommends “If you like this title, we also recommend… Apostrophe (2004)”)
I’ve definitely seen/ heard this a lot and agree with your breakdown of it: English ‘clutch’ sounds like German ‘Klatsch’ and seems appropriate for a gathering. The fact that the German ‘Kaffee’ is commonly substituted by the English equivalent, ‘coffee’ lends to the eggcorner’s feeling that the second word should also be English.