MILF (was Re: change from the bottom up)

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at YAHOO.COM
Tue May 1 14:46:44 UTC 2007

A connection never occurred to me either (I mean, of course, "never occurred to me as well").

But that proves nothing. We do have proof that the association occurred to at least one native speaker and, presumably, to others.

Without the miraculous recovery of a self-conscious statement at the moment of coinage, we simply can't say whether the unknown coiner of the term made the same association.


David Bowie <db.list at PMPKN.NET> wrote: ---------------------- Information from the mail header -----------------------
Sender:       American Dialect Society
Poster:       David Bowie
Subject:      Re: MILF (was Re: change from the bottom up)

From:    James Harbeck

> I'd like to add that I don't see a clear justification for the
> phrasing outside of the "motherfucker"/"fuck your mother" reference,
> and that pretty much anyone habituated to vulgarity is bound to think
> of the term "motherfucker" the moment they hear the phrase "mother
> I'd like to fuck."

Well, i'll admit that i was probably thinking of people behaving a bit
more rationally than they often do in my previous post (particularly
with regard to language, and especially taboo language), but i'll raise
my hand as someone who had *never* considered a connection between
motherfucker and MILF before it was raised on this list.

They're just completely separate spheres to me: Motherfucker describes a
male (even when used as a term of friendly greeting--"Hey, motherfucker,
what's up?" has to be directed to a man, not a woman, for me) or a
thing, while MILF describes a female.

Of course, i learned what MILF meant (as in: hot [relatively] older
woman) before i ever learned what it was an acronym for. I don't know
how common or uncommon that is. (And i never saw American Pie.)

Makes me almost sad that classes just ended here--i'd've liked to have
polled my students on this one.

David Bowie                               University of Central Florida
     Jeanne's Two Laws of Chocolate: If there is no chocolate in the
     house, there is too little; some must be purchased. If there is
     chocolate in the house, there is too much; it must be consumed.

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