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Simon Steele

‘Corpse Flower’ that resembles smell of rotting flesh set to bloom soon

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There's one at a conservatory here, it's a big draw

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Am I the only one who sees a problem with that headline?

 

You haven't been following the "Weird Things Your Brain Does" thread, I take it? ;)

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Strange. I immediately remembered a scene from an old episode of 'CSI' back when I still had television. Serial killer growing the plants out in the desert.

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Simon,

I must be dense what is the problem with the headline?

 

I think the problem is that it compares a flower to a smell, which doesn't really make sense.

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Jon,

Ah, poor use of metaphor. Got it. It doesn't "resemble" a corpse, it smells like one.

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Yeah Scot, I think I am having trouble with the idea of a smell "resembling" something but I wanted to try it out here and see if I was wrong. I am an English major, but that doesn't mean I'm right (I often find that means I'm wrong). I thought resembled had to do with visual, but the headline is really bugging me because of the smell thing.

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You haven't been following the "Weird Things Your Brain Does" thread, I take it? ;)

 

No, but I'm going to go check is out asap!

 

There's one at a conservatory here, it's a big draw

 

It sounds awful--haha.

 

Strange. I immediately remembered a scene from an old episode of 'CSI' back when I still had television. Serial killer growing the plants out in the desert.

 

I thought of the infamous flower from breaking bad.

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Yeah Scot, I think I am having trouble with the idea of a smell "resembling" something but I wanted to try it out here and see if I was wrong. I am an English major, but that doesn't mean I'm right (I often find that means I'm wrong). I thought resembled had to do with visual, but the headline is really bugging me because of the smell thing.

 

 

Nah, resemble can be anything in my book. Although you can quibble about the precision of the headline, since it implies that the flower itself resembles the smell of the corpse.

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Yeah, I see I'm wrong since no one but me picked up on it. One of those things I had to test. The definition of resemble is about visual, but this is one of those things I have to let go!

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I'd never thought about the verb possibly being defined very narrowly (it derives from the French sembler, which just means "to seem"), I thought comparing a physical, visible plant to an intagible, invisible smell was much more egregious.

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I didn't see the issue with the headline when this thread was first created.  When I first read the OP, my brain immediately concluded that this was a plant rights issue and decided I didn't want to get involved.  Glad to hear it's actually a grammar rights concern.

 

I think I might add smelling a titan arum in bloom to my bucket list.  

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You haven't been following the "Weird Things Your Brain Does" thread, I take it? ;)


felice!!! :D

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Yeah, I see I'm wrong since no one but me picked up on it. One of those things I had to test. The definition of resemble is about visual, but this is one of those things I have to let go!

 
No, you're right. While resemblance doesn't have to be visual, I'd say the visual aspect would generally take precedence over anything else, eg saying one person resembles another because they have similar voices would seem strange (unless the person saying it was blind, I guess). If you're talking about a non-visual resemblance, you generally have to make it clear what sort of resemblance you mean, eg "person A's voice resembles person B's voice". It would have been fine if the headline had said "‘Corpse Flower’ whose scent resembles smell of rotting flesh set to bloom soon"; "‘Corpse Flower’ that resembles rotting flesh set to bloom soon" would be a bit odd, but better than what they actually used.
 

felice!!! :D

 
:ninja:

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No, you're right. While resemblance doesn't have to be visual, I'd say the visual aspect would generally take precedence over anything else, eg saying one person resembles another because they have similar voices would seem strange (unless the person saying it was blind, I guess). If you're talking about a non-visual resemblance, you generally have to make it clear what sort of resemblance you mean, eg "person A's voice resembles person B's voice". It would have been fine if the headline had said "‘Corpse Flower’ whose scent resembles smell of rotting flesh set to bloom soon"; "‘Corpse Flower’ that resembles rotting flesh set to bloom soon" would be a bit odd, but better than what they actually used.
 

 
:ninja:

 

Ah, you know what you're right, that's what it was! There is a weird disagreement with the subject verb there that would have worked much better in the way you worded it. I see the problem now. It's funny how that bugged me so much.

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