metaphorical "fellate"

Arnold M. Zwicky zwicky at CSLI.STANFORD.EDU
Wed Nov 9 22:47:07 UTC 2005

doing my recent posting on "fellatiate", i came across metaphorical
uses of this verb, meaning, roughly, 'pander to, praise', that is,
metaphorical 'stroke'.  the usage turns out to be pretty common for
the standard verb "fellate" (and the noun "fellation"), especially in
political, sports, and musical fandom contexts:

   The Economist has been a real disappointment in recent years,
moving away from their European-classical-liberal roots to fellate
the protectionist, ... movable_type/2004-2_archives/000584.html

   And as long as you continue to fellate at least some of my
favorites I'll keep coming back ... Sorry, I can't fellate everyone's
favorite band. Farewell... ...

   "You are so wise, I would like to verbally fellate you." Are we
clear? Great. Without further delay, here is my team... Team name:
Satirical Jokers ... index.php?showtopic=51292&view=old

(in the last example, the metaphorical nature of the verb is made
explicit by "verbally".)

sometimes the metaphor is specifically commented on:

   Seriously, my mistake was to imagine that in 2005 Nick Matske and
others in the PT star chamber were familiar and accustomed to the
metaphorical use of the term "fellate" to describe blatant pandering
by a journalist or pundit towards a political figure and his/her
views (e.g., Phil Johnson). As far as I can tell, someone just
flipped out upon seeing that word.

the usage is related to metaphorical uses of
"masturbate"/"masturbation" and "circle jerk" that i've commented on
here before, and to similar uses of "onanism" and "onanistic":

   So, enough onanistic back patting. Regular programming will resume
shortly. posted by Tom Tomorrow at 10:38 AM| ...

   ... they produce is a self-aggrandizing, onanistic waste of time
but if you look hard enough, you'll come across people doing
interesting and useful stuff. ...

the masturbatory image is of self-stroking or mutual stroking (with a
further connotation of uselessness or pointlessness), while the
fellatory image is of other-stroking.


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