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The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: jimbrady
Date: April 28, 2006 09:48AM
I just did a forum search for the exact phrase "the wife" and got 157 posts in the last three months.

What's the attraction of that phrase? Does "my wife" awkwardly imply ownership?

"The wife" just strikes me as a ridiculous anachronism... is that the point? It's so trite it's funny? Endearing?

I don't get it.

Tune in again tomorrow for my rant on "due diligence" (about 23,500,000 hits on google).



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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: papercup
Date: April 28, 2006 09:54AM
You win the Friday obtuse observation award, come up to the stage.
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: jimbrady
Date: April 28, 2006 10:03AM
You could have said "stupid" instead of "obtuse." Are you just being obtuse?



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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: jimbrady
Date: April 28, 2006 10:06AM
Guess how many posts featuring "the husband"

That's right, zero.
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: papercup
Date: April 28, 2006 10:09AM
You are building a strong case. I'm intrigued.

I wish to subscribe to your newsletter.
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: rgG
Date: April 28, 2006 10:11AM
I beg to differ. I often post things that reference, "my husband", as do others.
[forums.macresource.com]

Edit" OK, I see you are making the distinction between "my" and "the" sorry.





Roswell, GA (Atlanta suburb)



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/28/2006 10:13AM by rgG.
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: jimbrady
Date: April 28, 2006 10:12AM
>I beg to differ. I often post things that reference, "my husband", as do others.

I beg to assert that you do not differ.



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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: PeterB
Date: April 28, 2006 10:23AM
I have noticed (I'm not married or taken myself at the moment) that people often refer to "my husband" or "my wife"-- it seems women do this more often than men though. And "my girlfriend" or "my boyfriend"-- though rarely do I hear a guy refer to "my girlfriend", again this seems much more common amongst women than men. Finally, I have heard women refer to "my man", and yet you would scratch your head if you heard a guy refer to "my woman"-- you would say he was a caveman or a moron! (And let's not start about whether a guy can refer to a "girlfriend" who is just a friend, versus when a woman says "my girlfriend" and she could be referring either to a female friend, or a romantic partner, if she's gay.)

This sort of thing does bother me a bit when I hear it, because it does seem to imply some sort of possession-- and I'm strongly against that in relationships; and yet I agree that "the wife" or "the husband" just sounds stupid.

Since when is it necessary to say, "this person belongs to me, you can't have them" ? I guess we're all still cavepeople at heart... it's our primitive ancestry speaking...




Freya says, 'Hello from NOLA, baby!' (Laissez bon temps rouler!)



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/28/2006 10:27AM by PeterB.
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: jimbrady
Date: April 28, 2006 10:24AM
papercup. I know you... you have a certain familiar aroma. A recent addition to the MR roster (#720 out of 750ish), and yet it feels like you've been here for a very, very long time.

I, too am intrigued.
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: papercup
Date: April 28, 2006 10:30AM
; )
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: Todd's keyboard
Date: April 28, 2006 10:38AM
Hmmm, I frequently refer to my wife as "my sweetie pie." I also referred to her as "my sweetie pie" before we were married.

Many of my friends (who live in other cities) still don't know her name, and refer to her as "your sweetie pie."

When I was living in France I was surprised to learn that French people frequently refer to loved as as cabbages. They asked me what types of things English speakers use. I realized that "sweet" seems to be a big factor in North American English:

cutie pie
sweetie pie
sweet 'ums
honey
honeybun.


Todd's saccharine keyboard
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: $tevie
Date: April 28, 2006 10:44AM
I don't see the difference between "my husband" and "my mother" or "my father". I don't think it indicates possession, it is simply shorthand for "the person I am married to." Who in their right mind wants to say, for example, "I need to buy a birthday gift for the person I am married to"?

To me, "the wife" sounds like something a 1950s guy in a gray flannel suit would say: "Say, I didn't realize how late it was, I better call the wife."



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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: cbelt3
Date: April 28, 2006 10:56AM
I don't use that phraseology. I use "My lovely wife" or "My bride". Hey- she's been wearing my ring for 24 years...

Of course, I believe I am referred to as "My idiot husband"...
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: Mike Johnson
Date: April 28, 2006 10:58AM
I don't like "the wife" so I don't use it.

I also don't like "dh" so I ask my wife not to use it.
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: $tevie
Date: April 28, 2006 11:01AM
Designated Hitter?
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: PeterB
Date: April 28, 2006 11:03AM
$tevie, I see your point. It's just that I do think it transitions into possession with romantic relationships, versus familial ones. For example, the "my man" thing really strikes me that way.

Also, I think there is some possession inherent in the familial relationships too-- that is, "my mother" or "my father" implies a bit of possession, as does "my son" and "my daughter"-- to the extent that parents consider their children as possessions, rather than as human beings. (Unfortunately, there are a lot of parents out there like that!)




Freya says, 'Hello from NOLA, baby!' (Laissez bon temps rouler!)
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: blooz
Date: April 28, 2006 11:15AM
I used to work with a guy who referred to his wife as "the war department."



And we should consider every day lost on which we have not danced at least once.
—Friedrich Nietzsche
Western Massachusetts
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: IrvingSmiley
Date: April 28, 2006 11:31AM
SWMBO

She Who Must Be Obeyed!

Or is it Whom?
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: Donkey Hotay
Date: April 28, 2006 11:33AM
not "whom".

Rumpole knows whereof he speaks!



=DH
Donkey (Ye Olde Farte of ye Internette) Hotay is a Tilted Windmill® enterprise.
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: Donkey Hotay
Date: April 28, 2006 11:39AM
"The wife" is a usage that has a number of implicit cultural references that, sadly, no longer apply.

In particular, one has at most one wife at any given moment in time. Any reference to one's wife is inherently unambiguous.

Polygamous cultures, non-marrying cultures, and those cultures with non-heterosexual (and possibly non-human) marriage, will all find the term "the wife" confusing.

Tough noogies, I say.

The wife agrees.



=DH
Donkey (Ye Olde Farte of ye Internette) Hotay is a Tilted Windmill® enterprise.



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/28/2006 11:39AM by Donkey Hotay.
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: GeneL
Date: April 28, 2006 12:02PM
I think Stevie meant to say, "Designated Hitler!" smiling smiley

As I always say, "that's just my opinion, I could be wrong."
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: DaviDC.
Date: April 28, 2006 12:04PM
Back in the days when I was married, a coworker referred to my spouse as my wifelet. I guess because she was rather petite.




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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: Zoidberg
Date: April 28, 2006 12:07PM
I only started using it when I saw RAISING ARIZONA again; H.I. tells the kid at the counter he's robbing, "And make it quick, I'm in dutch with the wife" as she's outside yelling "you sonofabitch!"
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: sscutchen
Date: April 28, 2006 12:18PM
My wife has said in no uncertain terms that the reference "the wife" is absolutely prohibited. She finds it terribly demeaning, equating her to an object, as in the pencil, the building, the table.

I have a cow orker that always refers to his wife as "my honey." "Last night, my honey and I tired this new resturant..." "I'll have to call my honey and see if we have plans that night..."





Don't ask who the bell's for, dude. It's you.
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: davester
Date: April 28, 2006 12:23PM
I refer to "my wife" as "the boss".



"In science it often happens that scientists say, 'You know that's a really good argument; my position is mistaken,' and then they would actually change their minds and you never hear that old view from them again. They really do it. It doesn't happen as often as it should, because scientists are human and change is sometimes painful. But it happens every day. I cannot recall the last time something like that happened in politics or religion." (1987) -- Carl Sagan
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: Linda2
Date: April 28, 2006 12:39PM
I have a good friend who usually refers to his wife as "my bride." They have a lovely relationship and the term is very appealing when he uses it. I'm not sure how it would come across if used by someone else but I really like to hear him refer to his wife of 25 years that way. It's very sweet. Context is everything, I guess.
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: Lux Interior
Date: April 28, 2006 12:46PM
They're all biatches & hos to me.
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: Mike Sellers
Date: April 28, 2006 01:35PM
"Spousal Unit" works both ways.
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: SKYLANE
Date: April 28, 2006 01:37PM
deleted



Edited 1 time(s). Last edit at 04/28/2006 01:38PM by SKYLANE.
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: jimbrady
Date: April 28, 2006 02:25PM
I guess I made a clever subject line for once.



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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: davemchine
Date: April 28, 2006 05:14PM
if "my wife" ever stops saying "my husband..." then I know I'm in big trouble! winking smiley

Dave
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: Grumpyguy
Date: April 28, 2006 06:35PM
is this like when in TOS the referred to it as "the Enterprise" but in the Next Generation, it was referred to just as "Enterprise."????


Sorry, not married : )



Bryan
______________________________________________________
Mac Mini 2.6 GHz, 16 GB ram Big Sur
MacBook Pro (Early 2008 model) 2.4 GHz, 4 GB ram, 200 GB hard drive/ Mac OS 10.9.1
iPhone XR
Location: Cincinnati
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: wolfcry911
Date: April 28, 2006 07:49PM
A friend of mine affectionately refers to his wife (in any type of conversation) as 'The Battle Axe'.
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Re: The wife is getting a bit old and worn out.
Posted by: Baby Tats
Date: April 28, 2006 09:28PM
For some reason that neither of us can really explain my wife and I refer to each other as "girlfriend" and "boyfriend". It really confuses people who don't know us. At work I usually call her my SSO.

BT
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