A Shallow Grave

Does it bug anyone else when television news makes a big deal about the body of murder victim being found in a “shallow grave?” As if a deep grave would make any difference. Oh yes, so-and-so was killed, but at least they were buried in a deep grave, so everything’s cool. Gah!

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5 thoughts on “A Shallow Grave

  1. I think “shallow grave” is one of those cliché phrases that’s automatic with TV news writers. The way the phrase is used strikes me as if they are saying insult has been added to injury (in this case, murder) — not only was the person murdered, but they were buried in a shallow grave. Even more scandalous! What kind of a grave could a person dig, anyway, without heavy equipment? Of course, the grave is going to be shallow. The fact that it is shallow doesn’t add anything to the story. I guess I wish they’d say something more meaningful, like your suggestions, or just leave the word “shallow” out of it.

  2. I don’t like it either. I’ve come to suspect it’s not usually a grave per se, so much as leaves and such. I doubt, as you suggest, the killer(s) devote much time to it. If the “grave” was 6 ft deep, it’d be a lot harder to find (meaning no news story and no murder solved).

    Another phrase I’ve had way too much of: someone’s “battle” with an illness.

  3. I was trying to go to sleep the other night and I thought of a good alternative word to “shallow.” It’s “makeshift.” Doesn’t that work better?

    I’m not as bothered by someone in a “battle” with an illness. It is overused, but it does take effort to follow the medical regimen and keep spirits up. Then once you’ve won the battle, there’s the whole cliché “survivor” thing you get to tout! 🙂

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