I've Had a Vasectomy. I Am:

Not so (although I used to think that too):

Also not so about fertility:

(old joke told by Orson Bean on Match Game ca. 1974)


That’s a very silly statement, sir. Men as well as women can be infertile or fertile, as both sexes are required for sexual reproduction.

Nope and …errr… nope.

Sorry, yep.

“Fertile” is from Latin “to bear.” Only the female bears.

As for “impotent” –

So what? The meaning of words in modern English is not determined solely by the etymology of their sources in earlier languages.

“Fertile” and “infertile” are indeed used in modern English to refer to males as well as females, as previous posters have correctly pointed out.

“Impotent” is less useful in this context because of the potential confusion with erectile dysfunction, as opposed to reproductive sterility. “Infertile”, on the other hand, is an unambiguous, generally understood, and accurate equivalent for “reproductively sterile”, and applies to both men and women.

Perhaps you personally would rather not have the recognized meanings of English words evolve in a different direction from the logical implications of their origins, but there’s not a lot you or anybody else can do about it. Refusing to acknowledge that such semantic evolution occurs doesn’t accomplish anything except to spread confusion and waste time.

I think I just figured out why I’ve got that Henery the 8th song stuck in my head.

A Jaffa.

You’re a eunuch!

(I got snipped in '93!)

My dictionary is better than your dictionary.

If any more of you guys show up we’ll have to get a eunuch’s administrator to keep everyone sorted out.

Sorry, wrong again.
Fertile is from the Latin *fertilatatem, *from fertilis - “to bear in abundance, fruitful, or productive.”
Yes, the one of the root origins is ferre - “to bear” but that isn’t the meaning of the whole word.

You don’t call your mother a moth or your country, a … and all that.

That said, I’m not sure female bears have to do with it.

Aha! Caught you!
Your link points to the definition for impotence not the definition of impotent which does not include sterility.

LOL if your going to cite dictionary.com, please read your own links.

I tell people they had me fixed.

Converted from the family model to a sports model.

Considering that the very first definition of “impotence” is “the quality of being impotent,” I don’t really see a pwn here. If “impotence” can mean the quality of being sterile then by necessity “impotent” can mean sterile.


Thought this would be a good place to link to this articlemy husband just emailed me. Seems there’s a new, completely reversible alternative to getting a vasectomy. It sounds pretty cool, but I think hubby is just looking for an out. (He’s going to be undergoing the procedure next week.) I told him, A.) No, you can’t fly to India to be a lab rat for this guy and B) No, we can’t wait until it’s approved by the FDA. Sorry, dude, but next Friday you’re getting snipped whether you like it or not!

All along the interstate here are billboards advertising a “no needle, no scalpel vasectomy”. They always make me and my husband snicker, as we try to imagine how exactly it’s done… a mallet?