Can I call someone "dear" whenever I want to express hospitality?
The grasshopper has used "dear" in a flattering way here to appeal to the ants. In reality, it would be a bit awkward to use "dear" to address someone you're not familiar with or don't have a close relationship with. Sometimes, it can be used by a senior to address their juniors even if they're strangers (for example, an elderly woman addressing a young employee at a store as "dear"). It is also used to address people in letters. In other cases, it might sound awkward or inappropriate. Ex: My dear son, why have you failed all your classes again? Ex: Hello dear, could you help me reach the top shelf? I'm a bit old and am not strong enough.
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