- Thursday 6th December 2018, 1:06pm [Edited]
- 3,280 posts
I don't think it's possible to define "surreal" in such a way that it becomes easy to describe any given thing or situation as either "surreal" or "not surreal". A great many things will fall readily into one category or the other but many others will be on the borderline.
There are many words in every language that are widely misused: "literally" being one and "surreal" being another.
To me, "surreal" describes things and situations which can exist only in a dream but, as I say, there are borderline cases. If someone arrives home to find the walls of his living room dripping with blood, the floor covered entirely by a 6-inch deep layer of live mackerel on top of which the Pope is having sex with Diane Abbott while Bob Dylan sits on a golden throne in the corner singing "The times they are a-changing", is that surreal?
The fact of the matter is that such a thing is not impossible in real life but, having acknowledged that, the probability of its occurrence is so close to zero as to make it almost indistinguishable from zero.
As I say, there are borderline cases.