Thursday, September 19, 2013

A "Furled" Brow

2 hours and 47 minutes.

Sometimes I feel like I'm in high school.  OK. Except for the parts that ache when I sit still too long....those don't feel like high school parts! 

But, sometimes, Rob and I sit on the phone for hours in the evening.  Like tonight.  Yikes!  2:47.  He's sitting in Atlanta.  I'm home. It's not as bad as it sounds, it's not like I'm curled up in bed, whispering under the blankets. I'm putzing around, he's on speaker, we are both multi-tasking, checking email, etc.  Good thing we have unlimited minutes. 

So, he's reading this ridiculous article  "Six Weird Things that Turn Her On", and asks,  What is a Furled Brow?

Background: I am a disgruntled, former English major.  I know my words.  Sometimes I mess up. And when I do, it's big and embarrassing.  But, generally, I can tell whether a given word has been used correctly, or spelled correctly.
"Do you mean furrowed brow?" I asked. 

He proceeded to do a quick search and came upon a lively debate regarding the etymology of the words furrow and furl.  It appears that the word "furl", when used as above in "a furled brow" is likely a malapropism, or mis-usage of an old nautical term mean to fold and is most commonly seen used as "unfurl".  For example:  She unfurled the sail. You can certainly stretch your understanding and see that if furl means, to fold, and unfurl means, to smooth, then a furled brow might be intended to demonstrate a wrinkled brow.  However, it is more likely that because the words are quite similar sounding, when furl is used it is unintentionally substituted for the more appropriate furrow meaning, a groove. 

Do ya love it?! 

How do you go from an fluffy article about things that "Turn Her On" to a discussion of old, rare words?  Put two logophiles together and it's easy, even likely to ensue.

So, did you know, by the way, that women find men who have a furrowed brow more attractive than men who do not appear worried or deep in thought?  They are also attracted to: the color red, cleanly shaven faces, good hands, deep voices and a healthy immune system. Huh.  Read more fluff here:

So, it turns out that it's not just Rob's, ahem, hands, that I'm attracted to.  I personally love that he's a word nerd like me.