Thursday, October 26, 2006

Pardon my language

Dear Marc, be happy you're American. I'm Swedish. Sweden's a small country filled with Swedes, speaking an archaic language understood by roughly 9 million people and (perhaps) a handful of Danes.

Your language is beautiful and varied, enrichened by the creative, violent and strange history behind it.

You have words like nipple. A wonderful, fun, pert little word. Know what nipple is called in Swedish? Bröstvårta. Breast wart. All tingly now? It's like a word made up by a dull viking, intending to kill all sensuality by use of language alone.

You have areolas. We have vårtgård. A wart yard. Touch it. Would you? Why would anyone ever want to?

The people that invented Swedish hated boobs and love. They must have. There is no other explanation.

-e, writing in English for obvious reasons


Nora said...

I feel your pain - in German nipple is 'Brustwarze'. Same scary breast wart you talk about in Sweden. Maybe the vikings spread the word in the Teutonic woods?

-e said...

You're right! Those frightful vikings, swinging their swords left and right they probably spread more than words in battle. I fear the warzes were flying like bullets.

Anonymous said...

Your blog is very funny. Ilove it.

from Brazil,


Eebs said...

What is the most beautiful word in Swedish (to you)?

daddylikeyblog said...

That is the funniest thing I've ever read. I've never thought of English as a beautiful language. We're taught to envy French and Spanish and Italian instead-the "romance languages." I think you just gave me some first-language esteem though. Thank you.
p.s. When did you learn English?
p.p.s.s. I'm going to start calling people I don't like Brostvartas.

Anonymous said...

This is hilarious. I'm an (American)linguist and I've never met anyone who has called English beautiful. Tak! It could be worse. You could be Icelandic.

-e said...

daddy, I think I was 10 when we were first taught English in school.

eebs, that's a tough one. I like the sound and feel of "semla". It's a kind of pastry.

-e said...

Anoymous, it is a beautiful language. English is an amazing language, constantly developing because of the more than a billion people using it today and the millions who've done so before. You have so many words, so many idioms and sayings. You're blessed.

denise said...

e, i speak portuguese, but i think english is sweet, too. me and my husband prefer discuss things using the english, its so much easier, the verbs etc.italian is a amazing language, but english is eay to speak.

love from brasil


Cathrine said...

Ah, well. I know what you are talking about. I'm Norwegian. But I've always thought that the Swedish language is nice. Much nicer than Norwegian. But of course - English is a broader language, with nicer words than "brystvorte".

Those darn Vikings..

taittems said...

OH my, how interesting! LOL! Very funny! (I may have to read more!)

Hilde said...

HAHA! det är rätt! :D

Anonymous said...

As an alien and undereducated, influent speaker of swinglish, I truly love your blog! I'm first-generation Swedish-American, scorned by my Swedish relatives for my impure handling of the Svensk tongue, and mocked by Americans for not being able to pronounce any word that begins with "w." Also met with disbelief when I tell people I'm Swedish, as my hair is no longer blonde, but instead, a dull, mousy brown (as is the hair of many of my real Swedish cousins, who were once towheads, too.)

You are very "kul!" Maybe breast warts were caused by those viking breast plates, and that's why the Swedes hate them.

What can you say about a country where it's not customary to tell loved ones that you love them, where canned delicacies are buried in the ground and caviar comes in tubes??

My favorite Swedish word is sjuksköterska.

hej hej!


Miss F said...

hello, -e. I really love your blog.

I am from the Philippines, a country much much different from yours. It's so hot here ...people walk slowly, and most often, people from other countries think we're lazy.

It's life in the slow, humid lane that we do not even have a Filipino word for "seconds" and "minutes". Our words for these came from the Spaniards 'segundo' and "minuto', respectively.

That's my language trivia for you from the Philippines.

Take care, -e.

Host said...

You made me laugh out loud. or rather "wart yard" made me laugh out loud at the high end salon I'm working at. Clients looked at me dissaprovingly, then i said "No, you don't understand, let me just tell you about the wart yard..."

Anonymous said...

Well, at least the sound of swedish isn't as horrible as the sound of Danish. It's so horrible, plus no-one but us Danes have a clue of how to pronounce it!:D

LallaLydia said...

Hmm, so what's the word for "titilating" like in Swedish? I laughed so hard am so happy Winona led me to your blog.

Anonymous said...

Svenska är ett vackert språk! Du är ju dum i huvet. Okej, bröstvårta är ett äckligt ord men vi har tusentals ord som är tusen gånger vackrare än de engelska motsvarigheterna. Lilja, dofta, hallon, melodi, trolleri...Listan är lång

Swedish is a beautiful language! Don't listen to this idiot