Date: Wed, 27 Sep 1995 08:10:28 -0500

From: "Dennis R. Preston" preston[AT SYMBOL GOES HERE]PILOT.MSU.EDU

Subject: Re: candy bars and measurements

M. Lynne Murp[hy asks:

candy bars

i was a bit surprised to find that "candy bar" is not in any of my

american english dictionaries, since, for me, this is not entirely

compositional in meaning. candy bars are chocolate bars (or bars

involving chocolate at least on the outside, like a mars bar or a kit

kat). it would be weird (for me) to refer to a bar of licorice or

nougat or peanut brittle as a "candy bar." do others share this

intuition? or is a chocolate bar a prototypical candy bar, but

the others are still candy bars? (maybe my intuitions are fading.)

and is there any part of the u.s. in which "candy bar" is not used?

In the dim past, before I discovered Cabernet Savignon, I ate candy bars. I

remember eating one horror called a 'Baby Ruth.' It had an (UGH!) peanut

covering and, as I recall, no chocolate at all. I agree it might be less

'prototypical' than such putatively chocolate but tasteless abominations as

the 'Three Musketeers,' but it was, nevertheless, a 'candy bar.' Shape and

packaging seem to be nearly as important as other factors (except, of

course, for the ubiquitous gob of sugar). Looks like a victory for fuzzy

sets and prototypes to me.

Odd, however (at least to me) is the fact that 'candy bar' is not a subset

of the class 'candy.' I would have to go up to the higher class 'sweets' to

include both.

Dennis who-don't-eat-no-candy-no-more Preston