The Alternative Dictionaries
April 2, 2003 6:20 PM   Subscribe

Colorful phrases in 172 languages *contains offensive language* - but how else are your going to learn how to say "to pet one's monkey" in Russian or the Romanian classic "Our boss is a bloody farthead"?
posted by H. Roark (13 comments total)
Cool - now we can cuss out our global MeFiosos in their native language when we get in disagreements. I could have used this page on April Fool's Day.
posted by madamjujujive at 7:30 PM on April 2, 2003

I see it's Language Day here at MeFi. This is actually quite well done, based on the languages I'm familiar with; under Spanish, "concha (fem. noun) + cunt Uruguayan slang" should include Argentina as well (girls named Concepción always get a rude shock when they visit Buenos Aires and discover that their usual nickname is greeted with gales of laughter), but that's a pretty minor quibble. Of course, it's too bad the Russian isn't done in a way that would make it possible to pronounce it without already knowing Russian (how are you to know that "khueplet" is khuyePLYOT and "lysogo" is LEEsovo?), but the meanings are all accurate as far as I can see. I look forward to Miguel's comments on the Portuguese.
posted by languagehat at 7:30 PM on April 2, 2003

Me gusto rasguñar mis jueves.

I think.
posted by WolfDaddy at 7:50 PM on April 2, 2003

Languagehat: I looked at the Portuguese part: it's atrocious. There's little distinction between Brazilian Port. and Portuguese Port. (the slang is quite different); not to mention the Angolan, Cape Vertian, Mozambican and other versions; there are many spelling errors; real mistakes; and, above all, it's a very limited sample for such a rich set of vocabularies. It's tremendously confusing - my advice is to disregard it completely.

Calão (as slang is called here) is passionately debated in Portugal and Brazil, practiced and lexicographically followed and anthologized - almost on a yearly basis. This was lazy work by someone with only a faint notion of Brazilian slang and almost none of Portuguese, imo.

P.S. I'd linked this on my blog, for a laugh - and it kept my readers amused for a week.
posted by MiguelCardoso at 7:51 PM on April 2, 2003

To reverse the consultation: for two weeks now I've been enjoying this impressive (at least for an ignoramus such as myself) compilation of how to say the numbers 1 to 10 in over 4500 languages. Is it any good, languagehat? Worth a post, you think? ;)
posted by MiguelCardoso at 7:56 PM on April 2, 2003

I was reading the Time Out guide to Amsterdam in preparation for an upcoming trip and found the following insults in Dutch that wasn't listed at the site:

volgescheten palingvel

according to Time Out it means "shit-filled eel-skin" which is directed toward a skinny person.

and the always popular moederneuker which is motherfucker.

that's all i really need to know.
posted by birdherder at 8:22 PM on April 2, 2003

yep, some of the literal translations are gross / weird; the literal translation of "I'm having a shit" in irish is "I'm making bad jam"! (déanaim neamhshuim)
posted by kev23f at 12:13 AM on April 3, 2003

Mental note: When in Ireland, avoid the toast.

From the Portuguese: (I feel like a dirtier Elizabeth Browning)
queres que te chup
(frase) sounds like "do you want ketchup" means also "do you want a blow job"
I'll never hear the Las Ketchup song the same again.
Actually, I just hope I'll never hear it period, but that's another thread.
posted by arto at 1:06 AM on April 3, 2003

Well in Greek *some* of the entries are wrong:
gama stavros sou is actually "gamo to stavro sou", "munga" is actually "mangas" and is hardly insulting and - weirdest of all - "hevimetallas" meaning headbanger, heavy metal fan, is certainly no more insulting than its english equivalent...
The more interesting insults (and the more dialectical) are also missing...
posted by talos at 1:23 AM on April 3, 2003

Hee hee, arto. Actually, "queres que te chupe?" just means "You want you me to suck you?". If you were offering someone a blowjob in Portugal you'd say "Queres que te faça um broche?". In Brazil, it would be "Quer que eu faça um boquete pra você?". In both countries, just as we adopted ciao ("tchau"), the charming Italian pompino is making headway.

posted by MiguelCardoso at 3:49 AM on April 3, 2003

"You want you me to suck you" may sound interesting but I meant "You want me to suck you?".

*cue all those who'd say yes. ;)
posted by MiguelCardoso at 3:51 AM on April 3, 2003

I dunno, I'm getting a kick out of my own language:

person (male) who bangs bums it should be quite clear in what circumstance(s) this word could be used

bush boogie (noun)
++ black person very derogatory term referring to Blacks; derived from their jungle origins.

lucky Pierre (compound noun)
the middle male in a threesome Implies John is fucking one person while getting fucked by another. Used in the gay world, but could be used in menage a trois with two men and one woman.

telesis (noun)
progress inteligently planned pacific telesis is the name of a company in California. (???)

wicked pisser (noun)
used in New England pronounced "wicked pissah" Descibing something very good or very bad. Usage: when used without an article as in "This food is wicked pisser" it is taken to mean very good. when used with an article as in "Your job is a wicked pisser" its taken to mean something very bad.

(sophomoric giggles)
posted by cohappy at 4:09 AM on April 3, 2003

Miguel: Yeah, zompist is a great site and that list is quite reliable.

Sorry to hear the Portuguese is so badly done, but that just emphasizes the wildly varying reliability you're going to get with a do-it-yourself site like this. (And I've discovered some errors myself on further browsing.) And of course it's only a small selection for each language. It's fun, though!
posted by languagehat at 9:56 AM on April 3, 2003

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