neat phrases from Kent Desormeaux

Charles Doyle cdoyle at UGA.EDU
Tue May 6 14:49:41 UTC 2008

Perhaps a related question: Horse racing is considered a SPORT (it's written about in the sports pages of newspapers); but which is the ATHLETE--the horse, the jockey, the owner?

---- Original message ----
>Date: Tue, 6 May 2008 06:19:56 -0700
>From: Jonathan Lighter <wuxxmupp2000 at YAHOO.COM>
>I've watched Animal Planet for so long that this usage seems perfectly ordinary.  Furthermore, the "tragic" part might apply more to the owners of the horse than to the horse itself.
>  But be that as it may.  Eveybody under the age of 115 should know by now what my freshmen knew thirty years ago (Ow! There goes that durned lumbago agin!), that a "tragedy" is just something that's very, very sad.   Like you go, "Oh, no! That really sucks!"
>  JL
>Wilson Gray <hwgray at GMAIL.COM> wrote:
>Amen, Charlie.
>On Mon, May 5, 2008 at 10:07 AM, Charles Doyle wrote:
>> Speaking of the Kentucky Derby: In the media chatter (oral and printed), the word "tragic" has undergone a further degradation of meaning. It is now a TRAGEDY when a horse gets injured and dies--presumably making the brute a tragic figure?
>> --Charlie

The American Dialect Society -

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