affair
Posted: 06 September 2017 03:45 AM   [ Ignore ]
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A short while ago I had the unfortunate opportunity to go to Physical Therapy due to a “torn Achilles Heel”.  While there a young man, maybe in his early twenties walked up and read my file.  He then stated that he knew exactly what the problem was.  He measured a spot located midway between anklebone and knee and then turned around the leg about 120 degrees from the top of the leg.  He then made a knuckle on his fist and applied significant force to this magical spot and said “This is a hidden muscle no one seems to recall.” It hurt like hell for about 30 seconds.  Then it felt good.  Then I stood up and tried it out on my “torn Achilles heel” and determined that the docs hadn’t a clue and that this young man was amazing.  I was cured immediately.  I then exclaimed that “This is the greatest affair I have ever had!” This had occurred in an open therapy room with several other veterans and PT staff.  I had meant it as a way to say that it was a social outing mixed with business.  The response from everyone else in the room was not what I expected.  Did I use the word incorrectly, and if so, why?

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Posted: 06 September 2017 04:10 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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When a person has an affair that almost always is in the sense of an illicit sexual relationship.

[ Edited: 06 September 2017 04:13 AM by Dave Wilton ]
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Posted: 06 September 2017 05:14 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Dave Wilton - 06 September 2017 04:10 AM

When a person has an affair that almost always is in the sense of an illicit sexual relationship.

Why?  I only ever thought of that definition when used in conjunction with the word “love”.  I suppose it could have to do with me reading Leo Bascaglia’s Living, Loving, Learning at too early of an age…

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Posted: 06 September 2017 07:34 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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It’s not that affair can’t have other senses, of course it can, it’s that when used with have or had it’s going to be taken by hearers as meaning a love affair.

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Posted: 06 September 2017 07:53 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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Very old Jewish joke:

Two Jewish ladies meet.

Rozelle says: ‘Sadie, you look radiant! A new woman! What gave you the new glow?’

Sadie: “Shh! Don’t tell anybody, but I’m having an affair.”

Rozelle: “Wonderful! Who’s catering?’

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Posted: 06 September 2017 08:09 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Great joke, Syntinen. I could actually hear a “badda boom!” at the end.

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Posted: 06 September 2017 09:53 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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When a person has an affair that almost always is in the sense of an illicit sexual relationship.

When the sense is a love affair or a sexual relationship it’s predominately preceded by an indefinite or definite article.

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Posted: 06 September 2017 12:53 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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When the sense is a love affair or a sexual relationship it’s predominately preceded by an indefinite or definite article.

Pretty much all nouns are predominantly preceded by an indefinite or definite article. That doesn’t tell you anything. The affairs of state/an affair of state, for example, or Iran-Contra was an affair involving Oliver North and Fawn Hall.

The the use of the verb to have that, absent any other marker, carries the implication of romance or sex. If you said Oliver North and Fawn Hall were having an affair, you would not be referring to Iran-Contra. (To the best of my knowledge, Oliver North and Fawn Hall did not have a romantic or sexual relationship.)

[ Edited: 06 September 2017 12:56 PM by Dave Wilton ]
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Posted: 06 September 2017 08:52 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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Pretty much all nouns are predominantly preceded by an indefinite or definite article. That doesn’t tell you anything.

You’re right, for this reason I’m deleting a portion of my comment. What I was trying to say is that one cannot eliminate indefinite or definite articles when the sense refers to a love affair or sexual relationship.

The affairs of state/an affair of state, for example, or Iran-Contra was an affair involving Oliver North and Fawn Hall.

The affairs of state, one can eliminate the definite article, the. For example, Affairs of state can always be confusing.

[ Edited: 06 September 2017 10:18 PM by Logophile ]
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Posted: 07 September 2017 07:25 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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It’s common to omit the article in plurals.

Even in the sexual/romantic sense, one would say, “He had several affairs,” or “She had affairs with several men,” without an article.

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Posted: 07 September 2017 07:51 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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I agree with previous posters: the OP’s choice of the word “affair” was a very bad one, because it was bound to mislead (of course, there was always the remote possibility that both patient and therapist were committed foot-fetishists, and that the OP wanted to share this fulfilling moment with others present: but I must admit that’s not a very likely scenario).  There are any number of other words better suited to the occasion.

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Posted: 07 September 2017 12:06 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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Reminds me of Buck Henry asking Dustin Hoffman, “Are you here for an affair?” in The Graduate.  Most people will default to the sexual meaning of anything if given half a chance.

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