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Author: WhitemiataXP Big gold star, 5000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 13987  
Subject: Re: Ad nauseum Date: 4/3/2003 4:33 PM
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"Nauseous ride" could be considered correct in the most technical terms. As a matter of habit, I personally never use "nauseous." It encourages others to either correct you (falsely), or to go around using the word incorrectly. The meaning of "nauseating" is more clear - causing nausea. End of story.

I was part of the original thread you guys commented on.

I just thought I'd elaborate on this comment above... I can't really agree.

IMHO there is a very profound difference between "NAUSEOUS" and "NAUSEATING" which makes using BOTH words, rather than avoiding one for fear of incorrect correction (what's up with that anyway? <grin>) preferable.

The profound difference I see (and the reason I chose Nauseous over nauseating) is that one has more of a UNIVERSAL connotation while the other seems to be defined more in relation to the effect it has on an outside object (object being a person, an animal, or whatever).

Basically if you put something Nauseous in an empty universe it would still be nauseous. Instead in an empty universe the concept of nauseating would be pointless as there would be nothing to Nausea-te.

Let's take a practical example.

Onions.

I hate onions, I can't stand them.

Now, if i wanted to convey that feeling in a well balanced way, I could write:

The smell of Onions makes me nauseated.

The statement is unattackable, of course, as I'm stating something about me. It's also a very weak statement, if what you're looking for is power.

What I'd more likely write, if I wanted to go in with a punch is:

The stench of Onions is nauseous.

This second sentence is much much stronger. It implies universality... that is, if the statement is TRUE, then it must be true for everybody. It does not, in fact, allow for the existence of people who enjoy onions.

Now understand that while I can't comprehend it at a conscious level I have grown to accept the reality that just like some people like to throw away money on the lottery, there are the occasional weirdos who enjoy onions (I'm joking here, cut me some slack), therefore I do understand that "The smell of onions makes me nauseated" would be a better statement if I were looking to be bland and universally acceptable.

But the situation that sparked the original post was not in fact a bland, observational one... it was a joke... someone was commenting on two posters e-smooching.

In that context, I personally feel it would be best not to forego the power of the stronger "nauseous" in favor of a blander, more acceptable "nauseating."

Alessandro
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