Monday, January 3, 2011

Question of the day

FLG was just wondering, after having written the word schtick: Why are there so many fantastic Yiddish words?

Bupkis, kvetch, kibitz, maven, nudnik, yenta, schlep, schmaltzy, and FLG's personal favorite -- chutzpah.


Anonymous said...


Mrs. P

George Pal said...

They’re fantastic and popular because they seem to be phonologically evocative of their compound meaning (how’s that for highbrow schmegegge).

When even the local wise guy took up using a Yiddishism instead of the Italian or English equivalent it was because he was going for ‘dickheadedfuckwad’ and ‘putz’ says it all in fewer syllables... and is less hurtful.

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