Those of you who have followed my wife Pam’s blog will quickly have established that we own a Golden Retriever named Honey. The name fits her perfectly, and was selected only after having put each other through an arduous process of going through lists of possible food products. (Neither “Sugar” nor “Syrup” were quite right; and “Beef Wellington” was eliminated fairly early.)
But since “Honey” is also a common term of endearment between Pam and me, I am often asked (as I was by some of Pam’s colleagues at work recently) if we have trouble telling at any given moment to whom it is being addressed.
To all such inquirers, I reply that context is key. It’s not as hard as you might imagine, once you’ve put your mind to it, to distinguish between “Honey, please take out the garbage” and “Honey, please don’t eat the garbage.”
Even so, there are times when a statement is subtle enough to require inside information to make the right call.
So, for your personal edification, please take note: if I tell you, “This morning, my honey ‘kissed’ my face,” you might reasonably and defensibly choose between two distinct possibilities. But the statement, “This morning, my honey licked my face” can present only one.
Because my dog doesn’t like me nearly enough for that.
[Thanks, Sweetie, for the guest post.]