Terms of Endearment

Mr. Tungsten and I had a stimulating debate as we were walking the dog the other night. Not about philosophy nor politics, oh no. Instead, our discussion was wholly concerned with a minor point of semantics.

It started because he made some cracktastic remark, for which I fondly called him a buttsatchel. He took umbrage and said he’d much rather be called an asshat.

“Buttsatchel is definitely worse.”

“No way. Buttsatchel is nicer because it only has the word ‘butt’ in it. ‘Ass’ is more harsh”

“‘Butt’ sounds gay,” said my 0.5-on-the-Kinsey-scale man.

I considered, the point of my chin fitting into the thumb-and-index webbing of my free hand. “I can see how you would think that. ‘Ass’ is in masculine words like “asshole”, whereas “butt” connotes things like ‘butt boy’ or ‘butt pirate’. ” [Okay, I did not in fact say “connotes”. But it would’ve been cool if I did.]

“Also, asshat is more dominant.”

“Huh?”

Mr. Tungsten laughed. “Well if you’re an asshat you’re on somebody’s ass, but if you’re a buttsatchel, people are putting things in you. You’re like this loose, floppy anus.”

“A buttsatchel isn’t the same as a butt,” I snickered, “A buttsatchel is like . . . I dunno, a shoulder bag worn on the butt. Why did you –”

But then I remembered all the slash fiction I’d been writing lately and shut up.

 

 

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