My recent rant about ice breakers generated quite a response.

I said that icebreakers free ships, not people. And yes, it’s spelt differently.

Judging by the response I got, a lot of people feel the same. The dreaded words, ‘let’s do an ice breaker’ make many of us cringe, freeze or run.

Denis wondered if ‘warm up’ was the same as ‘ice breaker’. Good question. The difference between the two may not be vast, but there is a distinction.

His question illustrated how powerfully language works to set expectations, as another reader…