Noun Genders in English

indexFrom the Washington Post Style Invitation, in which it was postulated that English should have male and female nouns, and readers were asked to assign a gender to nouns of their choice and explain their reason.

The best submissions:


Swiss Army Knife – male, because even though it appears useful for a wide variety of work, it spends most of its time just opening bottles.

Kidneys – female, because they always go to the bathroom in pairs.

Tire – male, because it goes bald and often is over-inflated.

Hot Air Balloon – male, because to get it to go anywhere you have to light a fire under it…and, of course, there’s the hot air part.

Sponges – female, because they are soft and squeezable and retain water.

Web Page – female, because it is always getting hit on.

Shoe – male, because it is usually unpolished, with its tongue hanging out.

Copier – female, because once turned off, it takes a while to warm up. Because it is an effective reproductive device when the right buttons are pushed. Because it can wreak havoc when the wrong buttons are pushed.

Ziploc Bags – male, because they hold everything in, but you can always see right through them.

Subway – male, because it uses the same old lines to pick people up.

Hourglass – female, because over time, the weight shifts to the bottom.

Hammer – male, because it hasn’t evolved much over the last 5,000 years, but it’s handy to have around.

Remote Control – female…Ha!…you thought I’d say male. But consider, it gives man pleasure, he’d be lost without it, and while he doesn’t always know the right buttons to push, he keeps trying.