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smallthunder
07-07-2007, 03:12 AM
My MC is basically a nice (Jewish) boy -- too well bred to use vulgarity, but "cheating" by using something very close in sound is OK.

Best case scenario: I'm looking for something amusing, but still believable.

Even better: An exclamation/something in Yiddish that SOUNDS bad (i.e. like an English expletive) but is, in fact, very innocuous.

Any one out there have any suggestions?

Tiger
07-07-2007, 03:46 AM
"Aw... Schlumfeifl!"

Siddow
07-07-2007, 03:55 AM
http://www.yiddishdictionaryonline.com/

Type in a word that you'd like to use in English, and have it translated to Yiddish. Like dummy, silly, etc.

Siddow
07-07-2007, 03:58 AM
Ah, there's no equivalent to silly.

But dummy is goylem.
And nerd is nebish.

Plot Device
07-07-2007, 05:21 AM
I have no Yiddish for you.

But I have heard "aw, stink!" and "this stinkin' thing!" used as a generic euphemism for almost any profanity.

Azure Skye
07-07-2007, 03:56 PM
"Oh fuuuuuuddddggggeeee. Except I didn't say fudge. I said *the* word. The queen mother of all dirty words. The eff dash dash dash word."

I remember seeing a few books in the bookstore with Yiddish euphemisms.

How old is your MC?

johnnysannie
07-07-2007, 05:42 PM
Ah, there's no equivalent to silly.

But dummy is goylem.
And nerd is nebish.

Nebish is not really translated as nerd; it's more like nothing, dreck (whoops, sorry, non-English word), lower than nothing, meaningless, doesn't matter

Ziljon
07-07-2007, 05:57 PM
"Awe, shiksa!"

I think shiksa means non-jewish girl.

Not sure about the spelling or meaning, but I think it sounds funny.

smallthunder
07-07-2007, 06:19 PM
"Oh fuuuuuuddddggggeeee. Except I didn't say fudge. I said *the* word. The queen mother of all dirty words. The eff dash dash dash word."

I remember seeing a few books in the bookstore with Yiddish euphemisms.

How old is your MC?

He's 35 years old.

smallthunder
07-07-2007, 06:20 PM
"Awe, shiksa!"

I think shiksa means non-jewish girl.

Not sure about the spelling or meaning, but I think it sounds funny.

I like! I like!
[and yes, it does mean that]

Maryn
07-07-2007, 07:42 PM
I'm a big fan of non-expletives that start with F. Here's a few Yiddish terms your character might use that sound like he's going to say something much stronger.

Farmisht - Befuddled

Farmutshet - Worn out, fatigued, exhausted

Farshlepteh krenk - Fruitless, endless matter (Lit., A sickness that hangs on)

Farshmeieter - Highly excitable person; always on the go

Farshnoshket - Loaded, drunk

Farshtaist? - You understand?

Farshtopt - Stuffed

Farshtunken - Smells bad, stinks

Farshvitst - sweaty

Far-tshadikt - Confused, bewildered, befuddled, as if by fumes, gas

Feinkochen- Omelette or scrambled eggs

Feinshmeker - High-falutin'

Maryn, goy girl

Scrawler
07-07-2007, 11:36 PM
When I was young, I used to say "Oh shhhhhugar!" Sometimes I'd push it to shhhheeeeeUGAR.
(This was back when I was smoking candy cigarettes.)

Sean D. Schaffer
07-09-2007, 11:02 AM
"Oh fuuuuuuddddggggeeee. Except I didn't say fudge. I said *the* word. The queen mother of all dirty words. The eff dash dash dash word."

I remember seeing a few books in the bookstore with Yiddish euphemisms.

How old is your MC?


I remember the first time I saw that movie: the kid did not originally say 'fudge'. The word was later changed and the narrative changed too. But it was a long REAL F-word that came from the actor's mouth in the version I saw for the very first time. I think it had first come out on VHS at the time.

:D

Mac H.
07-09-2007, 11:45 AM
The incredibly-G rated movie 'Madagascar' had the Zebra swear by saying "Sugar Honey Ice Tea" (In the scene where he realises the Lion is trying to eat him).

I've always been in favour of variations like 'Hucking Fell !"

Mac

Kadea
07-09-2007, 12:25 PM
I've heard nucking futs a few times and I'm rather fond of it.

Sandi LeFaucheur
07-09-2007, 02:16 PM
As a child, I used to say pig's feet. Don't ask me why. And h-e-double-toothpicks for hell. Flaming Norah is a good English one. But I'm afraid that none of those are Yiddish or even close to it. I'm intrigued by Maryn's list. Most of them start with "far". Is there a meaning to that prefix, or is it just coincidence?

Maryn
07-09-2007, 06:23 PM
I'm intrigued by Maryn's list. Most of them start with "far". Is there a meaning to that prefix, or is it just coincidence?I chose that section from a much longer list, since alternate-use non-swear words often begin with the same sound the "bad" word does. I assume these words took on this use when people started to say the naughty word and caught themselves only after having uttered the initial consonant sound. There's no other reason to say "Fudge!" when you hit your thumb with a hammer.

Maryn, who could also hunt up the SH part of the list

Bmwhtly
07-09-2007, 06:24 PM
No Yiddish, I'm afraid. But 'cleaned-up' versions of curse words are always good for a giggle.

"Mother Hubbard" instead of... well, say it aloud and you'll get it.

As far as exclamations go, there are many unoffensive ones. "Hell's Teeth" springs to mind.

Chumplet
07-09-2007, 07:43 PM
Those fellows on TBS are pretty adept at substituting swear words in movies. It really throws me off sometimes. Also, Ned Flanders comes to mind.

auntybug
07-09-2007, 08:08 PM
One of my favorites:

"Got dandruff, some of it itches!"

Sorry - not yiddish - just good :tongue

Susie
07-09-2007, 08:17 PM
I kinda like the word fakockta. (Sp?) Means messed up.

Tiger
07-13-2007, 02:19 AM
What if the guy had a last name that he could whip out once in awhile? Like, "Aw, Lipshitz!"

Stressed
07-13-2007, 05:51 PM
I have had a soft spot for ‘frak’ and ‘frakking’ since watching Battlestar Galactica years ago [original series, Dirk Benedict, swooooon]. And ‘pain in the mikta’ from Stargate SG-1 [Richard Dean Anderson, swoooooon].

Tornadoboy
07-16-2007, 07:36 AM
Could you just have him sort of tap dance around an actual expletive? I once heard a guy describe how someone "wished sexual penetration upon him, his mother and the horse he rode in on", putting it in those terms had me rolling on the floor!

Tiger
07-16-2007, 11:22 PM
Hah! But, do you really have to go into so much detail? I would just say something like: "Oh yeah? Well, you, the horse you rode in on, and the cactus ya hitched it to."

FTJoshua
07-19-2007, 01:13 AM
Christopher Columbus! ~ from "Murphy Brown"

Holy Bible!

Blessing pastor!

My wife still uses "What the Hades!"

<sigh>

benbradley
07-19-2007, 04:00 AM
I thought all good Yiddish words started with something like "schl..." or something similar, like in the movie Spaceballs, "The Schwartz."
Ah, there's no equivalent to silly.

But dummy is goylem.
And nerd is nebish.

I can only wonder if goylem got shortened to goy, meaning a non-Jewish person...

There's always the idea of inventing your own swear word, such as Ringworld's "tanj."

And didn't I mention Frank Zappa in a recent, similar thread?

Stylo
07-19-2007, 02:40 PM
My current favorites are 'Mother Lover' and 'Feck', which is Irish, as in 'You fecking eejit!'

Tiger
07-19-2007, 10:49 PM
There's always the idea of inventing your own swear word, such as Ringworld's "tanj."

Actually, an acronym: There Ain't No Justice

alanna
07-21-2007, 01:35 AM
"poppycock" is a wonderful word

personally, my favorite swear-substitute (for use around children) is:

"OY VEY MAMA MIA QUESADIA JIMMINY CRICKET BEANS!!!" at the top of my lungs

Okay, I know I mispelled some of that. I took French, not Spanish!

JB_Finesse
07-21-2007, 03:57 AM
I like "Bob Saget", mostly because you can say it with the same inflection as "God damn it". Spoonerisms such as "Fothermucker" can also be fun.

Tiger
07-21-2007, 04:09 AM
I kinda liked, "FUNKY BUTT-LOVIN'...!!" from "Rookie of the Year"

rtilryarms
07-21-2007, 05:26 AM
"Green Acres" is the model I use, Oliver Wendell Douglas cussed by leaving out the words themselves - but did all the necessary word structure to make the audience believe they heard him swear.

How did he do it? By saying all but the words:

"What the..."
"For the love of..."
"What in the..."
"son of a..."


I use this style.

I believe that the saturation of cursing diminishes it's powerful appeal. If you do it more than twice in a book, you are just writing words. If you avoid the words, you are using them for maximum effect.