Lauren Krueger & Matthew David Brozik

100: Elephants!

In Definally on August 12, 2011 at 12:00 pm

For our 100th entry, Definally. will take you through the 100 different elephants that appear from time to time in conversational English. (You don’t want to offend someone/some elephant by referring to the wrong one. That said, this Pachyderm Correctness movement might have gotten a tad out of hand.)

Color Location Significance Origin
Any In the room A controversial or merely awkward issue that is obviously present yet avoided as a topic of discussion. Elephants historically have snuck into rooms and loitered there, just waiting to be talked about.
White In one’s possession Useless and troublesome—e.g., expensive to maintain and/or difficult to dispose of. The kings of Siam would give a white elephant as a gift to an obnoxious courtier (or a widower retained to teach the royal children the English language and British customs), in order to ruin the recipient with the great expense incurred in maintaining the animal, which he could not get rid of for fear of insulting the king.
Pink Anywhere there’s a drunk person Supposedly typical hallucination of one (human) who’s been hitting the bottle. Pink elephants like to party.
Blue The wild, presumably Q:How do you shoot a blue elephant?
A: With a blue elephant gun.
It’s a joke! Get it?

Okay… that’s really all the elephants we’ve got (without getting completely absurd). It’s not 100, and for that we apologize, a little. On the other hand, it really isn’t our fault that people don’t talk about elephants more.

Thanks for sticking with us through the first 100 posts! And with this, Definally. is going on elephanthiatus.


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