Tuesday, January 27, 2009

it's a funny language

having english-speaking visitors reminded me of all of those words in danish that appear quite hilarious to the native english speaker, but which have ceased to seem funny to me after ten years because i know what they mean in danish.  things like:

slutspurt - used in regard to sales in shops--it's like the final days of the sale--the final "spurt" of the sale, if you will. no sluts are actually involved (i don't think that kind of thing goes on sale).


fart plan - this is seen on ferries and at bus/train stations--it's the schedule. when i got here, i thought, whoa, the danes are even more organized than the germans!

fart kontrol - warning that there is a speed trap ahead (they're kind enough to let you know here). when i first got here, i thought it was pretty incredible that they thought they could control such things.

i fart - this just means "in motion" and can be seen in elevators. probably tho', what you think it means could happen in an elevator as well.

fagfolk - this isn't a derogatory term for homosexuals written on the side of a truck, but another way of saying professional.  a fag is a profession and it's pronounced "fay."


during my sister's recent visit, we quite literally had hours of fun laughing over these.

then, this morning, i came across this in the NYTimes and realized it could be worse, the words could actually BE in english already and you could live in places with names like crotch creek and the like. read it if you'd like a laugh.

14 comments:

Molly said...

makes our balderdash words seem quite tame...
oh lordy, I must get round to posting there!

julochka said...

i know, me too! i just haven't had the inspiration. i posted some yesterday that i made monica & jason write, but i really must do some too.

sunmamma said...

Hahaha this is so funny!!

eyebuzz fine art said...

When I was little, my father would try to say a few phrases in Danish around the house to tease my mother, and he always butchered them. Most notably, when he asked for a cup of coffee, it always involved some word in Danish that sounded suspiciously like "snot". It always made me laugh, but now I'm thinking he may have just been making the whole thing up! Thanks for the laugh. Thank god I'm just from Tarrytown! take care,tt

willow said...

Thanks for the giggles this morning! Too funny!! :D

Your word verification is "zoinkeye"...that's funny, too!

Barb said...

This was so funny .. I, oooops needed fart kontrol. LOL

It's Just Me said...

Luckily I had already finished my coffee, or I surely would have spit it all over the screen! Funny stuff

Bee said...

I can't believe that Will Ferrell and his team haven't found a way to set a movie in Denmark! What with all of the fart jokes, the movie would just write itself.

(BTW, if you want to "pitch" this to Hollywood yourself please feel free.)

So, so funny.

Gwen said...

this made me laugh.

my husband is in amsterdam right now, struggling with dutch. perhaps i should send him north?

tangobaby said...

omg, omg, omg. You're killing me. This is hilarious! I cannot come to visit you.

This post just brought out the 7th grader in me BIG TIME and I'd probably get arrested in Denmark by laughing and pointing at signs all over town.

How do you walk around with a straight face? The Farrelly Brothers would have a field day making a movie there.

julochka said...

i really appreciate you guys reminding me of the humor of this...it's strange how one becomes immune to it when you know what it means in the language. it loses its punch.

tangobaby said...

No, it's really funny AND we're really immature.

Michelle said...

I was on the phone with the dentist's receptionist booking an appointment when I starting sputtering loud guffaws (sp?)! too much! I especially love slutspurt. I think this might have been a period of adolescence I sadly missed....hmmm.

Magpie said...

Awesome.

I confess to a great joy at the names of things in the Ikea catalog - like the bottle opener called "Opna" - I guess you have to hear me say it out loud...