The flaggy thing on the end of my tea bag reminded me of a previous post I made about another Yogi Tea suggestion. This particular flaggy thing reads, “You are unlimited.”
Nice, right? I saw the movie Limitless, I’m a budding megalomaniac, this should be right up my alley! But it’s not. Because of lexical ambiguity.
“You are unlimited” is probably intended to be read as “You, person– you have no limits, and we interpret this as a good thing.” However, the “unlimited” portion of the quote is not synonymous with “limitless.” The substitution of -ed for -less opens the word up to interpretation as a verb rather than an adjective. With this new definition, it appears (to me) to read “The act of reading this flaggy thing removes the limits that previously constrained you.” As in, this flaggy thing has un-limited you.
And frankly, that’s just not true.