Thursday, June 28, 2012


Ohh look, stripes! Sadly, it's not a feature I've designed, it's just one I can't get rid of due to the fact I'm a Luddite when it comes to cut and paste. 
But hey, I'm just going to embrace it. Do you like my redecoration?
I came across this list the other day - you may well have seen it as it's been doing the rounds on the interweb but it's just too good not to cut and paste repeat. 
In a nutshell it's a list of 25 words that don't exist in the English language: okay, we're kicking off with :
1 Age-otori (Japanese): To look worse after a haircut. Isn't that a great word. I wonder if there's one that's 'To look like a poodle after a blow dry'. I've been there. I needed that word. 
2 Arigata-meiwaku (Japanese): An act someone does for you that you didn’t want to have them do and tried to avoid having them do, but they went ahead anyway, determined to do you a favor, and then things went wrong and caused you a lot of trouble, yet in the end social conventions required you to express gratitude. Oh, that's getting way too complicated for my simple brain, but I can almost get it.
3 Backpfeifengesicht (German): A face badly in need of a fist. I love that word. I work with people who work with people who need that word. 
4 Bakku-shan (Japanese): A beautiful girl… as long as she’s being viewed from behind. Is that better or worse than 'A beautiful person...until they open their mouth'?
5 Desenrascanço (Portuguese): “to disentangle” yourself out of a bad situation (To MacGyver it). I'm okay with 'MacGyver' as a verb. 
6 Duende (Spanish): a climactic show of spirit in a performance or work of art, which might be fulfilled in flamenco dancing, or bull-fighting, etc. I've never needed this word, but I can understand it would be very helpful for some. 
7 Forelsket (Norwegian): The euphoria you experience when you are first falling in love. I can't believe we need ten words to describe this, when one would do.
8 Gigil (pronounced Gheegle; Filipino): The urge to pinch or squeeze something that is unbearably cute. I'm hearing ya. 
9 is a bit boring. 
10 Ilunga (Tshiluba, Congo): A person who is ready to forgive any abuse for the first time, to tolerate it a second time, but never a third time.  A third time? Really? It's sad that this word exists. 
11 L’esprit de l’escalier (French): usually translated as “staircase wit,” is the act of thinking of a clever comeback when it is too late to deliver it. This word is me. 
12 started to lose me and 13 as well. Oh and, add 14. 
15 Meraki (pronounced may-rah-kee; Greek): Doing something with soul, creativity, or love. It’s when you put something of yourself into what you’re doing. I'm loving meraki. 
16 Nunchi (Korean): the subtle art of listening and gauging another’s mood. In Western culture, nunchi could be described as the concept of emotional intelligence. Knowing what to say or do, or what not to say or do, in a given situation. A socially clumsy person can be described as ‘nunchi eoptta’, meaning “absent of nunchi” And I'm loving nunchi as well. 
17 Pena ajena (Mexican Spanish): The embarrassment you feel watching someone else’s humiliation. Does 'cringe and die a little bit inside' also work? 
18 Pochemuchka (Russian): a person who asks a lot of questions. Hmmm, some of my nearest and dearest would argue that we have a word for that in English: 'Kate'.
19 Schadenfreude (German): the pleasure derived from someone else’s pain. I think that's done the jump to English. 
20 Sgriob (Gaelic): The itchiness that overcomes the upper lip just before taking a sip of whisky. Don't get that. 
21 Taarradhin (Arabic): implies a happy solution for everyone, or “I win. You win.” It’s a way of reconciling without anyone losing face. Arabic has no word for “compromise,” in the sense of reaching an arrangement via struggle and disagreement.I like this word. 
22 Tatemae and Honne (Japanese): What you pretend to believe and what you actually believe, respectively. Graham Capill, anyone?
23 Tingo (Pascuense language of Easter Island): to borrow objects one by one from a neighbor’s house until there is nothing left. Don't think I need that word. 
24 Waldeinsamkeit (German): The feeling of being alone in the woods.Does this apply to bears?
25 Yoko meshi (Japanese): literally ‘a meal eaten sideways,’ referring to the peculiar stress induced by speaking a foreign language. I get this !
Anyhou, feel free to expand your vocab. I shall endeavour to (but can safely safe, will fail miserably. But I'm okay with that). 


Catherine said...

That's brill Kate ..laughed out loud at no 2, i tend to attract that sort of 11 ( what a fabulous phrase), Think I ,ve lost my Meraki and as a true blood Irish woman ,have felt the itchiness that overcomes the upper lip many,s the time! :))

laughykate said...

Isn't it great, Catherine?! I particularly love 11. And I do hope you find your Meraki!