Monday, February 05, 2007

Executive airbus

...is not a plane, but a bus. This one and many other similar ones.

Notice what is written on the window - the word is executive. How did a word like executive, connected with execution get labelled to a bus?

Heres the dictionary definition of Executive which offers a clue. It means, "a person or group of persons having administrative or supervisory authority in an organization". It also means, of or suitable for use by "executives".

And heres the online etymology for the same word.

So perhaps this bus is suitable for use by executives - then what about managers or vice presidents? The point that I am trying to drive at is that executive as a word had (has?) a usage that was associated with luxury, comfort at some point in time. Especially in India and combined with air conditioned and super deluxe, executive was a big deal in the 80s.

Coming to buses, the sky is the limit in terms of terminology. More on that some other time. Many other words have found their way into this space and the usage of executive to denote comfort has taken a back seat. Indeed, today executive, as in the context of this bus, means, not a great level of comfort, but better than ordinary. Words like Business class, Luxury (and variants) have taken over the space of comfort, but Executive continues to be used here.

2 comments:

Kaps said...

Long distance buses which operate from Singapore call themselves - Business Class on the road. they really mean it. Look at their site to understand what they offer:
http://www.transtar.com.sg/firstclass.php

Neelakantan said...

The volvos on Indian roads are pretty good too. It is just that the Rajahamsas - the non AC "luxury" buses still carry the luxury tag or "executive" tag which I find archaic.