Those of you read my recent post, English Closed Triple Compound Words, will not be surprised to learn that I am pleased by a phrase that holds three distinct meanings: Clown Therapy.
Once upon a time, the phrase referred exclusively to the notion that laughter is the best medicine. Gelotological practitioners dressed up as clowns and visited sick children in the hospital, bringing them a spot of cheer.
But the word was just begging for this great interpretation by the Simpsons that refers to, of course, therapy for clowns.
And just when you thought the phrase had been through the wringer, along comes a new definition: Therapy for people who are afraid of clowns. Yep, Coulrophobics have a new cure -- but in a sick, sick twist, the therapy is delivered at a circus, by, you guessed it: Clowns.
How wrong is that?