I was chatting with some people online during my friend's radio talk show, and the question came up when my friend mentioned "hot tropical girls".

What exactly do we mean when we say "tropical girls"?

I know that the tropics are the areas just north and south of the equator, but if this is the case, would Shasta the Kenyan woman be a "tropical girl"? Would Tara the Singaporean woman be a "tropical girl?" or would we mostly refer to Hokawa the Polynesian woman, Hermana the Mexican woman or Tanya the Floridian woman as a "tropical girl"?

Example: "I love tropical girls!"

closed as primarily opinion-based by TimLymington, jimm101, Nigel J, AndyT, Skooba Mar 29 '18 at 11:29

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  • 5
    I think you’ll have to ask those people who used the term. The English language doesn’t have an opinion on the matter. – Dan Bron Feb 25 '18 at 1:41
  • They may be misusing the word. They are girls from wherever the person using the phrase thinks the tropics are. It could be specific, or perhaps they think it means exotic. – Christopher Issac Feb 25 '18 at 1:59
  • The caller on the show who asked it is from Missouri, but I am from Manitoba – The Cat-alyst Feb 25 '18 at 2:30
  • @TheCat-alyst What I’m trying to say is no one can answer you about what he guy from Missouri had in mind or how he’d classify Shasta, Tara, Hokawa, Hermana or Tanya except the guy from Missouri himself. – Dan Bron Feb 25 '18 at 2:44
  • That's the problem with general terms like "tropical girls", on the chat we all deduced that it is a general term. While some times general terms have a definition, it is loose. I.E. would an Arab refer to someone from Morocco as well as the Arabian peninsula? there isn't always a clear definition of an Arab, is it the same with "Tropical Girls?" – The Cat-alyst Feb 25 '18 at 3:46

Language is hardly ever direct or exactly literal. Sometimes when we don't know something, the only place to start is literal.

'Hot tropical girl' is not a set phrase, that is, the term does not evoke something more than the combination (after cultural inferences have been made).

It would be too mechanical (or rather in very very uncommon circumstances) for it to mean a female human of age under 18 whose skin temperature is above 102 F and was born between 23.5 N and 23.5 S longitude, bleep bloop bleep, computation terminated.

'Hot girl' here mostly means a younger woman who is attractive. 'Hot tropical girl' is the same but showing tropical features like medium skin color and few clothes. What 'tropical' is exactly is just as vague as 'hot' or 'girl', it has a broad enough range that it depends on the person who used it, the audience, etc. Pinpointing it to individuals with particular nationalities with particular names might be misleading; you might be unnecessarily leaving out Mildred the Glaswegian.

The entire phrase is not really a 'thing' (that's what it means to be a set phrase). It's just this one guy who came up with that phrase (others may easily do so too, but it's not a 'thing'). It's the difference between 'white house' (a house that is white) and the White House (a house that is white but is capitalized and other stuff).

I can easily anticipate that your next immediate question is about the term 'Viking beef cake' (eg Liam Hemsworth as Thor). He is (arguably) not a sugary floury bakery item made out of cow muscle who invades Northern Europe from Scandinavia circa 900 AD. We know this because Liam is from Australia.

  • 2
    latitude, not longitude. – Centaurus Feb 25 '18 at 15:08
  • @Centaurus I'll extend you considerable longitude, considering your current situation. – Mitch Feb 25 '18 at 15:13
  • My current situation ? Can you explain what you mean? – Centaurus Feb 25 '18 at 15:30
  • Mitch, can you explain what you mean? – Centaurus Feb 25 '18 at 19:10
  • There's no Chris here. – Centaurus Feb 25 '18 at 21:35

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