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dancer386Thursday 26th of August 2004 08:07:14 AM
Slang: Lip service - QUOTE

"I think in my life, to a large extent, I抳e only paid lip service to a spiritual life. I was brought up as a Catholic and went to church every week and took the sacraments. I was educated that way, but it never really touched the core of my being."

Sting, in an interview with the White Lotus Foundation


Age: 53
Born: London, England

Recent Work: Sacred Love (2003)<br>At the Movies(2002)<br>The Very Best of Sting and the Police (2002)

anyone who is interested, plz tell me what it means.......
AnyaThursday 26th of August 2004 08:46:15 AM
puzzled - Ok, so I was perplexed by your question because I was also not familiar with this slang term. English is my second language.

At first I was going to take it in context and say that Sting was not so interested in "spiritual life" and only "lipped" along at services instead of participating in earnest. I still feel like that may be what is meant because he goes on to say that he was brought up Catholic which didn't really affect his outlook. In other words an idiom.

For purposes of science, and completeness...I went to the dictionary of contemporary slang by Tony Thorne.
Here is what the slang dictionary reads and maybe a native speaker can resolve the conflict.
[quote]lip service: n
fellatio. A humorous euphemism from the professional jargon of prostitution and pornography (punning on the standard idiom 'to pay lip service to').[/quote]
If we consider the standard then:
1. Insincere praise or worship.
2. Respect or loyalty that someone appears to show, but which is not really held.
Idiom: pay lip-service to someone or something
To pretend to agree with someone or approve of an idea, etc without really doing so.[/quote]

I vote that Sting really was just using a standard idiom and not slang.

It's up to your interpretation.
Hope that helped.

lodgeyThursday 26th of August 2004 06:38:05 PM
- I'm a native English speaker (Australian, not American, but I can understand the quote without any problems).

I would say that Anya is correct, and the second dictionary definition seems to be what he means.

In my experience paying lip service to Catholicism means that he would say and possibly do the right things to seem Catholic, but it was never more than just words. It was therefore 'lip service' as opposed to any real belief in Catholic doctrine.

I've never actually heard the term used according to the slang definition quoted, but then I probably don't hang around with the sort of people who would use the term like that.

please note: I'm not an English teacher, and my grammar and punctuation are not perfect. I grew up learning how words are actually used in the comunities I grew up in, not how the English teachers say they shoud be used. :)
Sammie8008Saturday 15th of January 2005 09:52:21 PM
lip service - Yes I agree with both Anya and lodgey. Here in the United States if someone is giving you lip service they are basically telling you what you want to hear without backing it up or following through.
A simple example of lip service would be if person A told person B that they "totally love and adore " her new Louis Vuitton bag, but really thought that it was over the top and ostentatious.

Sorry if that just added to the confusion.