Final Word from Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Opponents of the ODS-ČSSD coalition often use pig-related language to describe what's transpiring at Prague city hall. Czech slang is richer in pig imagery than colloquial English. We wouldn't get far if we translated "prasárna" or "prasečina" in the grand-coalition sense as "pigsty" or "piggery." The OED offers up the rare "swinery" and the humorous "swinehood," but "filthy business" is the closest we can get to expressing the proper degree of disgust and contempt felt by the protesters. For lack of a proper English word, August Darnell of Kid Creole and the Coconuts resorted to the German in his lovely tune, "Schweinerei." As a matter of fact, it'd make a nice international theme song for the Prague protest movement: "I want no more of it, fed up with the stink of it, Schweinerei, Schweinerei; I want no part of it, had more than my share of it, Schweinerei, Schweinerei; worn by the wear of it, Schweinerei, Schweinerei; order of the day is never give up, never give up, never give up hope." All in good fun, of course.[Czech Republic Oxford English Dictionary sting]

Glossary of difficult words

Schweinerei - Germany for "dirty trick" or "obscene act";

to transpire - to occur, happen;

pigsty - a pigpen; a very dirty or untidy house or room;

piggery - a farm where pigs are bred or kept; behavior regarded as characteristic of pigs in greed or unpleasantness;

OED - Oxford English Dictionary;

swinery - a place where swine are kept; a swinish condition;

swinehood - the condition of a swine;

lyrics - we loosely quoted the lyrics from the original version, not the YouTube version;

stink - the actual word in the song might be "sting," but this fits the context better.

All in good fun - meaning that this does not exactly express our political view on the subject but is meant to be funny.


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