I am watching Fraggle Rock Ep303. In this episode, Red says she's organizing an exhibit on athletic excellence for the annual Jock and Jockesses Picnic. I am wondering the meaning of "jocks and jockesses". Is it a humorous expression for sports athletes?
The word ‘jock’ has several different possible meanings, but used here, it’s a term for a male athlete. It’s often used in a derogatory manner, implying a lack of intelligence — the typical high-school-drama tv show plotline involves some kind of altercation between the ‘nerds’ and the ‘jocks’ — but not always.
The ‘-ess’ suffix is generally used to show that it’s a female form of the word, as in ‘countess’ and ‘count’. So a ‘jockess’ would be a female athlete, and ‘jockesses’ would be the plural form.
Jockess isn’t a ‘real’ word — and sounds quite silly to native speakers, because we associate the word ‘jock’ with a certain kind of maleness — which could be the source of the humour.