An Analysis of easy-Type Adjectives
by A. Word
In certain academic circles, there is a well-known category of
adjectives, often referred to as easy-type adjectives. These
include hard, difficult and others. The characteristic patterns
of easy-type adjectives are given in (1).
A. Word is easy to get along with.
It is easy to get along with A. Word.
A. Word was very easy for Merry to get along with.
It was very easy for Merry to get along with A. Word.
This is not the kind of phenomenon we will be discussing.
(Though all of the above statements are true!)
Instead, I want to give dating tips to the average unbound morpheme just
looking for a good time on a Saturday night.
If, like me, you are a word who is not quite adventurous enough to join
a Government & Binding Club, but neither are you a prudish closed-class preposition
who sits at home and never makes any additions to their circle of
friends, then here is what you need to know.
First, a couple of warnings to those of you new to the Dating Scene in
the Big Lexicon:
Stay away from foreign verb bars. Some of the characters in those
places don’t know when to quit. Do you really want to be inflected fifty
or a hundred different ways in a single night? (Or even thousands, if
you end up in the Finnish district!)
Watch out for mass nouns. They sometimes travel in very large groups
of one, and can get out of control after they’ve had a few drinks.
On the other hand, adjectives are usually pretty mellow, and
many are just looking for some fun. In particular, many of what I shall
call “easy-type adjectives” are, well, easy.
Below is a quick guide to adjectives you are likely to meet when you go out
on a Saturday night.
athletic—Often just looking for something physical. Can be
shallow, but then so are you. A good bet.
beautiful—Possibly out of your league, and very likely to look
down on you. Pass.
chivalrous—Will treat you very well, but may have moral
standards that preclude the kind of hot word-on-word action you are looking
for. If not, though, then very likely to treat you especially well. A
cute—Usually flirty and fun, but may be held back from
going home with you by the disapproval of friends. Worth a shot.
fun—As in “looking to have some”; likely you can get
funny—Not the same as fun, so be careful. There is
‘nice’ funny and ‘mean’ funny. ‘Nice’ will keep you smiling
all night. ‘Mean’ will likely as not turn on you before the night is
over—so best not to take that one home.
handsome—May be looking for a conquest—which may be what
you are looking to be. An understated kind of handsome may be a
little sensitive. Try not to break any hearts.
hunky—Sometimes a little too self-involved, but still
good for a roll in the syntax on a Saturday night. If not out of your
league, go for it!
intelligent—Probably a little shy, but if you can hold
up your end of the conversation, will often be wowed by your charms.
merry—Ah, yes. A merry time was had by all.
Oh! I’ve said too much.
pretty—Much better prospects than beautiful.
None of that haughtiness that comes too naturally to the etymologically French. Often down-to-earth, sometimes can be convinced to go back to your place.
psycho—Sounds like a lot of fun talking in the
bar—adventurous and a little kinky. But you are likely to find
yourself bound up in a grammatically infelicitous number of tight
leather inflectional morphemes. Never take psycho back to your place.
sassy—May actually just be sarcastic with a
makeover, so look out for that. Genuinely sassy can mean
adventure back at your place. Likely to inflect you in unusual but
fun ways. Take a shot, you won’t regret it!
sexy—Well, that’s putting it all out on the table,
isn’t it? More high-class than slutty, but equally likely to
just be a tease as to give you a derivational disease. Tempting,
slutty—Maybe a little too easy; definitely not one
to bring home to mother. May show you a remarkably good time, but
you may also wake up the next morning, hung over, regretful, tied
to the furniture, and inflected with a nasty venereal infix.
sweet—Possibly too shy, but likely desperate to break
out of that shell. Lead the way gently, and the sweet will often
follow. Make sure you aren’t dealing with a sugar substitute, though.
voluptuous—Knows how to have fun and not afraid to do
so. Not some fragile little flower afraid to be crumpled,
voluptuous has all the right curves in all the right places,
and knows what feels good. Be respectful and charming, and you will
have a night you’ll never forget.
witty—Again, may just be sarcastic in a better
suit. Likely to become tiresome in a long-term relationship; but one
night is hardly long-term. Can make you laugh—or at least if you make
yourself laugh, then likely to follow you home.
Remember, this is just a guide to give you the confidence you need to approach a good-looking word and incorporate yourself into the conversation. Always use your own best judgment. And always practice safe syntax.