Third Wheel

One who deters the socialization of a couple, perhaps when being invited out of pity or through a feeling of duty. This person may be eased into the situation by being allowed to stay in an envirnment he or she has become accustomed to (perhaps a kitchen, where the third wheel can bake cookies for the couple.) The third wheel may feel uncomfortable about watching the couple canoodle on his or her sofa, but none of this is taken into consideration.

Not to be confused with a tricycle.


The Zone (2012)

The book Ender’s Game by Orson Scott Card, published in 1985, is about Andrew “Ender” Wiggin, the third child in a family in a time when only two children are permitted per family due to population constraints.  His parents were permitted to exceed this limitation due to his siblings’ promising abilities, in hopes that Ender would be the desperately needed commander in a war against a species of hostile aliens known as the Buggers.

tricycle (often abbreviated to trike) is a three-wheeled vehicle. While tricycles are often associated with the small three-wheeled vehicles used by pre-school-age children, they are also used by adults for a variety of purposes. In the United States and Canada, adult-sized tricycles are used primarily by older persons for recreation, shopping, and exercise. In Asia and Africa, tricycles are used primarily for commercial transportation, either of passengers in pedicabs, or of freight and deliveries. In the Philippines, a “tricycle” is a public (for-hire) vehicle consisting of a motorcycle and an attached passenger sidecar.