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对象 outdated?


buanryoh

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I came across this while reading the New York Times today:

“Oh you know, I’m so old, you’re a young girl in my eyes,” she said to a female contestant who worried about being older than her date. “These days, everyone works for a few years before they start looking for a duixiang, right?” she responded, using an outdated term for significant other.

I thought 对象 was quite a common and not outdated way of saying "partner", especially the collocation 找对象. If it is indeed outdated, then what is a more fashionable term for significant other?

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Speaking of outdated, I was talking to someone last week who said that 老+性 as a respectful term of addressing someone is also outdated. Anyone confirm?

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I had the same thought when I read that article. A youngish clerk at convenience store used 对象 in conversation yesterday morning. I don't think it's outdated.

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its not and its meaning has actually expanded. if you go ji'nan in shandong province or some northeast china cities, it would mean 'spouse' too.

you hear an old lady talking about her 'duixiang' there, she's not talking about her 70 year old boyfriend but her husband.

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The word “对象”isn't so outdated, especially among older people. If you want to appear fashionable, you could use 女朋友 or 女友(I don’t like this word, don’t know why.). There're a few ways to ask somebody if he or she is in a relationship.

找对象了吗?

谈对象了吗?

在拍拖吗?

有女(男)朋友了吗?

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Speaking of outdated, I was talking to someone last week who said that 老+性 as a respectful term of addressing someone is also outdated. Anyone confirm?

Should have been 老+姓.

I think it is a term which shows intimacy or close relationship for a male, especially among peers. Some of my good friends always call me "老吴", though I am not that old; I am only 24. haha

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The word “对象”isn't so outdated, especially among older people.

I think that's the definition of outdated, only older people use it :P

Should have been 老+姓.

DOH! Damn that pinyin based IME!

I think it is a term which shows intimacy or close relationship for a male, especially among peers. Some of my good friends always call me "老吴", though I am not that old; I am only 24. haha

So it has changed. As I understand it, it used to be use towards both males and females, as a term or respect or for someone older than you. Seems like the meaning has changed.

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So it has changed. As I understand it, it used to be use towards both males and females, as a term or respect or for someone older than you. Seems like the meaning has changed.

No, I don' think so. It is just what it used to be. Try it on someone next time. :mrgreen:

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if we look at it from grammar book, 老/小 prefix dont really imply anything. 老师,老虎,老鼠,老陈,老吴 or 小陈,小吴. its just a form of intimacy when used on a person. thats from the the book. daily usage for 老 + person, it could be someone (relatively) older than the speaker, but not that old in actual age. or it could be someone you are familiar, you knew the guy for a long time, but not necessarily both of you are old people. as for 小, the old general could be calling his old 2nd in command as 小陈, even when both are 60+ and near retirement, its just a form of habit/intimate expression...

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