Thursday, October 26, 2006

Words that English ought to borrow

One of the joys of learning a language is the kick that you get when you encounter a truly expressive word that has no equivalent in any other language you know.
How many times have you looked at Emraan Hashmi, Deve Gowda or Himesh Reshammiya and struggled to sum up what you thought about their faces? The germans have just the right word for it. "Backpfeifengesicht": a face that cries out for a fist in it.

Just last fortnight, on our trip to see Kuranji Pushpa, we stopped at a lake called GaLikere for a while. The lake is perched on the top of a mountain and Everytime a strong wind blows, the water tips over from the side. That's how it got it's name. It used to be one of the most pristine spots I've ever seen, until a super-idiotic belief suddenly sprang up. People started to follow the custom of leaving their underwear behind after they took bath there, b********! Anyway, that's not the point of this post. At the lake, I got the chance to show off my skill at the game I used to call, until recently, "bouncing stones on water". Apparently, in dutch (oh I'm so in love with the language) they have a name for the sport, plimpplampplettere.

Every Saturday morning, my mom drives herself into a frenzy and turns the house inside out in her quest to personally attack every dust particle. In deutschland they call the mania Putzfimmel.

Read this article.

9 comments:

Bananarana said...

In Nepali, when you come across something truly stomach-churning or utterly gross, you say "Waaak laagyo!"

kavs said...

sakkat post! :-)

shady said...

cool link man. thx for sharing it!

I used to recommend the kannada phrase 'dove hodiyodhu' for an english equivalent of I-had-coffee-with-her-spent-long-hours-talking-on-cell-went-to-movie-followed-by-long-rides-on-bike-etc! Not in the same league as yours but works :)

Sams said...

Maybe there's something more to that "GaaLikere" you don't know. Could it throw back the undies - after thoroughly cleansing it, of course - to the shore at NIGHT, whenever a strong wind blows? ;)

Rajesh Chavan said...

You are having nice pic's of cats. they are nice.....you are a phtographer....

Swathi said...

nice nice post, loved those apt words in all those languages, but it wud've bin great had to included the pronunciation as well, n for ignorant folks like me it wud've helped to publish the exact details of this place u were referring to in this post.

jax said...

When is Next Change?

disha said...

uhh..am imagining people embroiled in arms of underwear as they try to swim this lake..and nice names :D..long time no see?

Ravi Masalthi said...

How come we did not see any undies at gaalikere? not that I wanted to!
How many languages are you learning at a time dude? It's been a while since I saw any posts on your blog.
Whats up?