The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #40507   Message #724919
Posted By: Genie
06-Jun-02 - 10:26 PM
Thread Name: Songs You Sing In the Shower
Subject: RE: Songs You Sing In the Shower
rich-joy, no thread creep intended, but to reply to your query re "significant other," the application of that term exclusively to one's "main squeeze' is, to my way of thinking, a deterioration of our language -- especially social science terminology -- as a result of the ever-increasing speed and power of the mass media. At least as far back as the 1950s the term was used --PLURAL form-- in sociology to refer to any and all people who were important figures in one's life [family and close friends especially, but also including such people as business partners]. Much was written about the influence these "significant others" had in the socialization process and personality development. Sometime in the 1980's, IIRC, when folks were looking for a term to describe live-in boyfriends and girlfriends--serious romantic/sexual partners who were not spouses--, various terms were tossed about, such as POSSLQ [can you say "pahz-zel-cue?], which is a census acronym [persons of opposite sex sharing living quarters; "er-um" [as in "Mom & Dad, I'd like you to meet my...], etc. Somebody [who no doubt knew nothing about sociology or social psychology] decided to limit the term "significant other" to the same hard-to-label person, and the media being what they are, the new usage caught on almost overnight. Now, if you tell someone you're going to spend the holidays with your significant others, they'll probably think you're into group sex!

I think it's a shame, because this usage implies that no one besides your sex partner is significant in your life, or that, say, the person you've been shacking up with for three months is more significant to you than your children, siblings, parents, etc.


Bringing this thread back on track, who can think of a good song for a GROUP to sing in the shower?