Do you say Naked or Nude?

Did you know there is a difference between being nude and naked? Neither did I. Well until last night. Nude means: To be without clothes, or bare, in a setting that the subject feels safe and comfortable, and they are not being represented in a sexually accessible manner. For instance, the Roman statues of the vestal virgins would be a nude. Michelangelo’s David would also be an example. They are unclothed bodies that are intended to represent natural beauty, not to create impulses.  Naked means: To be without clothing, or bare, in a setting that the subject would be embarrassed, left feeling exposed and defenseless, or to be presented in a sexual manner. A woman who is unclothed, except for her high heels and red lipstick, would be naked. An unclothed prisoner being interrogated would be naked. Hmmm, interesting and I never had a clue. 

Working night shift you catch yourself having very unusual conversations with your co-workers. We have 12 hour shifts at work and end up finding ourselves in very deep conversations on rare topics. Our conversation started last night as we were trying to figure out if the expression is called, “buck naked” or “butt naked”. Weird how these things come about. Anyway, we googled it. It is actually buck naked but in recent years has been heard saying butt naked. At least that’s what said. 

It’s funny when you realize there is so many quotes and phrases that are misused.  I’m guilty of saying, “walk on eggshells”. The expression is used to signify walking, talking or acting with great care so as to avoid a confrontation. The correct phrase is “walk on eggs”. Walking on eggshells would tend to have the opposite effect because it is noisy and could be irritating. Hahahaha. Anyone else ever say that one?

And “nip it in the butt” could work and still hold the same meaning as “nip it in the bud”. I again, always thought it was nip it in the butt. Damn, this is actually a learning lesson. The phrase actually came from herding dogs nip the rump of the problem sheep before they can get away. I suppose at some point it just becomes perspective. But you risk SOUNDING like you don’t know what you’re talking about when you alter a well-known phrase. Of course, sometimes it can make a great play on words – at a sheep herding show the announcer could sound kinda witty with the bud/butt exchange.

There’s some that think it is thought “Up and Adam” but it’s actually “Up and at ‘em!” It’s all in the way you hear things I guess! Also, hunger may indeed cause discomfort, there’s no such thing as a “hunger pain.” Hunger pangs, on the other hand, are the gnawing, severe muscle contractions that signal it’s time for dinner. Then it’s whet your appetite, not wet your appetite. 

I think the most common misuse of phrases comes in the form of lyrics. Isn’t it funny when you realize a song you have been singing along with for years is actually saying something different then what you were singing? And it’s someone else who is usually the one to point it out to you.  So, next time you get ready to say your favorite quote or saying like “Half of one, six dozen of the other”, maybe research it to make sure your saying it correctly, “six of one, half-dozen of the other.”




  1. Susie

    Very informative! A few years ago, I was speaking and used a saying and someone said–“What did you say?” I had used the phrase “coming down the pike”. There was a person there who said it was actually “coming down the pipe”. So I did some research on it. Turned out that both are now used. The “pike” on originated from the TURNPIKE–meaning road. The “pipe” seems to be more referring to water coming but are interchangeable. Our language is always evolving, isn’t it?


    • by Nanette

      True. And Susie, what I thought of the whole time while I wrote this was when you heard my ringback song on my phone and thought it was something else. Remember that???? Something about family?


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