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Thread: Dumb Blond Question

  1. #26
    A bit of a wallflower absitinvidia's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    All I know is, I crack up every time someone says "masseuse" to refer to a man.

    But it does lead to an interesting question: As far as I know, it is the only female-specific term that has gained such broad unisex use in American English. Is that the case, or am I overlooking the obvious?

  2. #27
    pretending to be awake onesecondglance's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2012
    Berkshire, UK
    Quote Originally Posted by Roxxsmom View Post
    But we are getting away from a lot of this in modern life (thank heavens). For instance, I've seen women referred to simply as actors, and the words steward and stewardess have been replaced by "flight attendant."

    A lot of the male gendered words for professions have also been replaced--for instance, chairman is now simply "chair," and fireman is now firefighter.
    Not looking for an argument here, but I don't get it, personally. I don't see what's wrong with "actress". It's a describing word. It doesn't connote anything other than what you bring to the table. Fine when you're talking in generic terms - a company of actors - that's different. (My mother in law is a magistrate, and they tried to pull that "chair" stuff with her. She told them she wasn't a piece of furniture, and they could call her the chairwoman or bugger off.)

    On the original subject, I'd only ever seen blond without an "e" in American writings (which is not to say it's some sort of continental divide, just that's my experience). I'd write it with an "e" for both sexes. It looks a bit odd without it to me, in the same way "gray" looks odd to someone used to writing "grey".
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