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06 August 2010 @ 11:11 am
Connotation / denotation / other stuff  
1. Headline: Missouri families grieve 2 slain in school buses wreck.

Comment: To me, "slain" has a connotation of deliberateness, more like murder, rather than accident. What say you all? Or was it simply a matter, since it's a headline, of choosing a word with five letters rather than six ("killed")?


2. Suppose you are in the USA and are on a road with five lanes: two in one direction, two in the opposite direction, and one in the middle available for left turns from either direction. This middle lane is typically double-striped: solid yellow on the outside and dashed yellow on the inside. What do you call that middle lane?


3. Masseuse: when did this become the word for male or female provider? I thought masseur was male, masseuse was female, and massage therapist was gender-neutral. Or is massage therapist only used for medical contexts, not for spas? Also, can you think of any other cases of the female form of a word subsuming the male form (as opposed to, say, actor/actress which is now commonly actor)?


4. "Gifted me with": when did this overtake "gave me"? And why? Am I wrong to think it sounds somewhat pretentious?
 
 
Current Mood: contemplativecontemplative
 
 
Buddha Buckblaisepascal on August 6th, 2010 04:50 pm (UTC)
In most places in the US, a "massage therapist" is a licensed profession, whereas a "masseuse/masseur" may be a less regulated term.
Xiphias Gladiusxiphias on August 6th, 2010 05:25 pm (UTC)
As such, "masseuse/masseur" may have an implication of borderline prostitution which "massage therapist" doesn't.

I suspect it's a useful distinction, since I figure that people who want to go to a prostitute will be disappointed in getting an actual massage, while people who need actual muscle work won't be satisfied with a prostitute.
Buddha Buckblaisepascal on August 6th, 2010 05:35 pm (UTC)
It can also lead to some unusual situations...

I've been to a large, clothing optional event where licensed massage therapists who were offering their services for free had to require that they and their clients put on clothing in order to get a massage, even though the massages were happening in an area open to children (so no sex really possible) and no money changed hands.