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Tuesday, June 29, 2004

Call me a shlimazl, or even a klloshar, but i have this altahmam, this saudade for gezellig. But i've never indulged in selathirupavar, and so, shaddup, pochemuchka. i mean, i am an ilunga, but don't push it.
Today Translations asked a thousand people on its network to nominate words that were problematic to translate, and then asked 50 of them to vote for just one of the top contenders. The winner was Ilunga (Tshiluba word for a person who is ready to forgive any abuse for the first time; to tolerate it a second time; but never a third time. Note: Tshiluba is a Bantu language spoken in south-eastern Congo, and Zaire). The ten English words rated hardest to translate: plenipotentiary, gobbledegook, serendipity, poppycock, googly, Spam, whimsy, bumf, chuffed, and kitsch.
Via Boing Boing by way of Backward City (Go there to see an interesting comments thread - but don't forget to come back here and add your own! This blog is sure Indian readers will have at least a few word to add aside from the Tamil selathirupavar, which means a certain kind of truancy. What kind i wonder?).

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