I have a Spanish friend who, as she learned more and more English, remained baffled by the word tasty. How, she wondered, could a word as neutral and conceptual as tasty — being of the taste sensation — come to mean tasting good?
It’s interesting to me how a word moves over time from neutrality to pejorative or compliment (not to mention how the word came about at all). Think about it for a minute: tasty — being of taste as distinct from being, I suppose, touchy, smelly, heary, or seey.
If tasty moved from being of taste to tasting good, selfish went the other route: from being of the self to being a bad self. There is no ambiguity to the word: to be selfishness is to be a bad. You’re never called selfish as a compliment or as part of a description: Oh, Daniel, that act…
View original post 948 more words