Thanks for the “pear-shaped” link

I love it that New York Times food editor Sam Sifton, in his Thanksgiving Cooking newsletter, not only used “pear-shaped” but linked to the NOOBs post on it.

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4 responses to “Thanks for the “pear-shaped” link

  1. With the greatest of respect, it may not be an appropriate time in history to discuss this particular expression. It means, of course, “gone wrong” or “unsuccessful” but unfortunately the image refers to the figure of a woman who is overweight.

    • But does it? When the BBC show Balderdash and Piffle (working with the OED) investigated the phrase, they were unable to come up with a definitive origin. I’ve heard derivations from parachuting, ballooning and aerobatics. Ben’s earlier post says it was originally RAF slang.

      And of course, in the 1890s Erik Satie wrote Three Pieces in the Form of a Pear.

    • With the greatest of respect, the phrase itself is harmless and has long since between detached from whatever its origins were.

      And since when did discussing the origin of phrases mean you’re endorsing that origin? When would be an ‘appropriate’ time to discuss it?

      Silliest post I’ve seen here in a while!

  2. Hmmm, I see more pear-shaped men.

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