To take it a little more further. What if you refer to your partner, let’s say he is called John or Cathy, as John-ish or Cathy-ish? What will it do if you are already togeher for years? Or to call your son Peter-ish?
We assume that a lot of preconceptions about persons will going to begin wavering, and will be urged to redefine attitudes and relationships with the other person. To illustrate this mechanism, we wrote a short script:
Rupert is seeing his old friend from school, Shaun.
RUPERT “Hi it is you Shaun, isn’t it?”
SHAUN (Redefining the old relationship) “Yes, it is me. I’m Shaun-ish.”
RUPERT (Not sure what Shaun means. Thinks he is suggesting that he has changed his surname) “Ish? I thought your name was. . .”
SHAUNE (Trying to explain) “No, I am Shaun-ish, just like you are Rupert-ish.”
RUPERT (Still not understanding what Shaun is talking. Turns around and sees a sport car. Tries to be funny) “That is a sport car, or is it sport car-ish?)
RUPERT (CONT”D) (Redefining his memory of a smart schoolkid) ” ????? Sahun-ish-ish-ish”
SHAUN “I mean the car seems fast but isn’t as fast as I like and the car seats might be made of bamboo and it is perfect for doing shopping and bringing the kids to school while still conveying an impression of me as a playboy”