I have seen articles or blog posts with titles like 4 steps to crush any presentation, 6 things successful TEDx speakers do to crush any speaking gig, and Crush every presentation with the Logitech Spotlight presentation remote.
Their authors apparently think I would use their meaning for the word crush – to subdue completely. But the mental image I get is of the mortar and pestle shown above – since I instead first think of crush as to reduce to particles by pounding or grinding. Logitech probably didn’t imagine their remote being used as a pestle, but I did.
The Merriam-Webster dictionary web page for the transitive verb crush lists the following five meanings:
1] a) to squeeze by force or pressure so as to alter or destroy structure.
1] b) to squeeze together into a mass.
2] to hug or embrace.
3] to reduce to particles by pounding or grinding.
4] a) to suppress or overwhelm as if by pressure or weight.
4] b) to oppress or burden grievously.
4] c) to sudue completely.
5] to crowd or push.
Watch what words you put in the title of your speech, article or blog post.