Learn English – “Sick and tied” and “sick and tired”


What is the difference between phrases "sick and tied" and "sick and tired"? Is the first phrase correct?

Possibilities (summary from comments):

  • The standard phrase is definitely “sick and tired” and the other version could be a typo
  • maybe some instances of "sick and tied" are parody of "sick and tired"
  • "sick and tied" could be a mishearing related to a non-rhotic accent
  • searching confirms that “sick and tied” occurs in the wild much more often than most typos do, and as a serious alternative, not a deliberate play on words. Looking at the usage makes it clear that some people really do know the idiom as “sick and tied”. Seems like a classic eggcorn, worth discussing as such

Best Answer

The phrase sick and tied appears to be either a typo (Theory 1) or a portmanteau of sick and tired and fit to be tied (Theory 2).

For theory 1, @MrHen points out that "Roughly the first page of hits I saw via Google all corrected the typo the next time the phrase was typed."

Looking at the Google results for the search: "sick and tied" phrase yields the following example to support theory 2:

We are sick and tied of seeing phone books printed, packaged and shipped - only to be put on our curb then in the landfill.

Something that you are sick and tired of could indeed leave you angry and agitated (fit to be tied), so it is possible that the two phrases became linked in some minds, leading to the sick and tied phrase.