Recently, I was in a meeting in a very professional corporate environment with a charismatic business leader and his competent, professional and attractive female assistant.
When the business leader was talking about one of his detail-oriented colleagues, he paused mid-sentence, looked at his assistant then back at me and said “excuse my language but he’s very ANAL.” He said it with an indescribably filthy tone that made everyone sitting at the table nearly wonder to which meaning of “anal” was he referring?
It is my perception that the once taboo word “anal” (taboo in a professional environment) has been making a slow rise to becoming a universally accepted word to describe someone who is either detail oriented or too uptight. By specifically apologizing for his use of that word to his assistant, he single-handedly set the movement (pun intended) back 100 years. Thanks to this situation, it’s going to be a while for me to hear the word “anal” in an office environment and not get uncomfortable.
It took every fiber of my being to restrain myself from telling him right then that by apologizing to her, he just made it WAY more offensive than if he just said it sans apology. For the rest of that meeting, everyone’s face looked like a butthole to me.