really? this is your list?

 Wordsmith.org

The Magic of Words

Dec 16, 2011

This week’s theme
Words borrowed from Yiddish

This week’s words
nosh
naches
schmutz
kosher
schlockmeister

A.Word.A.Day

with Anu Garg

schlockmeister

PRONUNCIATION:

(SHLOK-my-stuhr)

MEANING:

noun: One who deals in inferior goods.

ETYMOLOGY:

From Yiddish shlak (evil, nuisance) + German Meister (master). Earliest documented use: 1965.

USAGE:

“Schlockmeister Ed Wood was supposedly the world’s worst director.”
Philippa Hawker and Jake Wilson; Top 10 Films; The Age (Melbourne, Australia); Jul 17, 2010.

“You’re a Harvard historian, for god’s sake, not a pop schlockmeister looking for a quick buck.”
Dan Brown; The Da Vinci Code; Doubleday; 2003.

Your comments

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From: mysending
Subject: this week’s words

Really? I thought for sure you’d mention the word “shvitz”. That to me is a marker of how Yiddish has entered the American language. But I guess schlockmeister is more prevalent, or interesting, or however you figure these things out!

True story:

Years ago, I met someone who presented herself as Jewish, but I just couldn’t figure out where she belonged in the range of Jewish experiences. It was a very hot summer day and we were outside waiting for a camp bus to come bringing our big girls. I said, “Whew! I’m really shvitzing!”, or something similar, but for sure using the word shvitzing.

She said “What?”

Oh then I knew. She was definitely not an MOT* from birth.

Or from New York.

Or Hollywood!

*Member of the Tribe. Just sayin’.

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