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Asexy Slang: Squash - The Wordsmith's Forge — LiveJournal
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ysabetwordsmith
ysabetwordsmith
Asexy Slang: Squash
I was talking with a friend about asexual romantic relationships and realized -- oh look, English doesn't have a noun for "person in a close relationship that is romantic but not sexual."  

I'm seriously thinking "squash" would fit there, because "zucchini" is a general queerplatonic partner word, and "squish" refers to asexual crushes. I pretty much can't trip over a lexical gap without wanting to shovel something into it.

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cbpotts From: cbpotts Date: April 6th, 2014 11:18 pm (UTC) (Link)
And squash sounds good; it's a happy sounding word that makes one smile to say it in much the way crush does. (At least for me, I don't know how to explain 'word feel' but you of all people probably understand completely)

ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: April 7th, 2014 12:06 am (UTC) (Link)

Well...

When you say it, it's kind of like blowing a kiss, because of the "w" in the word.
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ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: April 7th, 2014 02:15 am (UTC) (Link)

Well...

>> I dunno, I don't know that I really want to refer to people that I care deeply about as food/vegetables. <<

Alternative terms are welcome.

>> I guess I don't understand the need for a new word that would broadcast the details of one's relationship so clearly. All anyone needs to know is that you are in a relationship with someone. What is or isn't happening physically is no-one's business. <<

Because people LOVE to talk about those things, often in exhaustive detail, as see the content of entire genres of entertainment. The most common configuration, romantic heterosexual, has abundant vocabulary for this: boyfriend/girlfriend, crush, lover, husband/wife, etc. People of different orientations often wish to have similar conversations but may find the available terms inaccurate or unappealing. Therefore they are currently engaged in exploring new options.

What this does is save time. It encodes a lot of information into a concise package. This makes it easier to talk about, which facilitates communication, which is something that many people want. "This is Bob," tells people nothing about Bob's place in your life, and maybe that's what you want. But a woman might want to say, "This is my boyfriend Bob" which conveys things like "So don't hit on him" and "We'd like to sit together." "This is my zucchini Bob" conveys that questions about a wedding are unwelcome, but that Bob occupies an important lifespace and ought not to be dismissed as 'just a friend.'
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siege From: siege Date: April 10th, 2014 12:49 am (UTC) (Link)

Re: Well...

I guess you'd call 'em a zucchini because they're not a cucumber? (Referring to the implied sexual use -- zucchini have stiff hairs that would make them unsuitable for it, but they are excellent foodstuff.)
johnpalmer From: johnpalmer Date: April 8th, 2014 04:56 pm (UTC) (Link)
One major point in creating words to refer to a concept is that sometimes people don't even realize there *is* a concept until it's named. It sounds weird, but a name gives something a brain can grab a hold of and feel.

One interesting view of language is that language is, in many ways, cutting away. When I refer to a "tree" one can view that as tossing out everything that is clearly not-a-tree. And so a new word because a new cutting away, a literary sculpture of sorts.

(Hah. And now I just flashed on the old joke, "sculpting an elephant is easy; take a marble block, and cut away everything that doesn't look like an elephant.")
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: April 8th, 2014 05:42 pm (UTC) (Link)

Yes...

>> One major point in creating words to refer to a concept is that sometimes people don't even realize there *is* a concept until it's named. It sounds weird, but a name gives something a brain can grab a hold of and feel. <<

Agreed. Those of us who think easily without words go stand on the edge of language and make more of it for people to stand on who need words to think about things.

This is also why it's valuable to have different languages; they help us see the world in different ways. Russian has two words for light and dark blue, the same way English has two words for pink and red. They're not perceived as shades of the same color, like light and dark green.

>> (Hah. And now I just flashed on the old joke, "sculpting an elephant is easy; take a marble block, and cut away everything that doesn't look like an elephant.") <<

The interesting thing about this is, some people's brains actually work that way. They see an animal in a block of wood or stone, and dig it out.
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johnpalmer From: johnpalmer Date: April 10th, 2014 05:35 pm (UTC) (Link)
Nod. I don't grok how zucchini became a term - it makes me feel like it's an inside joke (and that's the kind of thing that bugs me a bit because I'm used to being on the outside - so an "inside joke" has a bit of a push-away feeling for me - my baggage, but I don't think I'm alone in having it).

"Squash" as a variant of "crush" could kinda-sorta work, though... and it might be able to grow by usage (which is technically how all language grows).

From: siliconshaman Date: April 7th, 2014 11:37 am (UTC) (Link)
Squash has more negative/destructive connotations for non-american Europeans though without the food reference, perhaps the English word Squadge? [pronounced like a mash-up of squash & judge] Meaning to jam something into a too-tight space or fit something pliable into a gap so that it fits.
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