anonymous asked:

Why does Tommy say "since my wife took a bullet" it's such an odd choice of words do you think SK was trying to make people think she wasn't dead and Tommy Knew something?

Anon, watching that damn episode three times for the recap is one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. Superseded only by watching 3.05 that many times haha… Tommy’s guilt-ridden grief was so alienating. Nothing like the sorrow-tinged pain of s1 and s2. At the time I thought the plethora of euphemisms he used (shot, gone…) might have meant that she had been secreted away and he was in shock about what happened and furious with himself, but now I don’t. The line you’re asking about continues with “…that was meant for me!’ and Tommy does that entirely new face and stabs his fingers at John. It’s there to emphasise his culpability in the death of the love of his life and strongly suggests he thinks it was him the bullet should have found. I hate the way it was done but s3 implies a bit that losing Grace was an experience akin to death for him, getting him so in touch with the spirit world.


Fun with Polish language 3

On request: softer and non-vulgar swear phrases, with their literal meaning:

  • motyla noga! → buttefly’s leg 
  • kurczę!  → small chicken / chick (the most popular euphemism starting with ‘kur-’ that can replace the well-known ‘kurwa’)
  • kurczę pieczone! → roasted chick
  • kurczę blade! → pale chick
  • kurza stopa! → hen’s foot
  • kurza twarz! → hen’s face
  • kurza melodia! → hen’s melody
  • kurka wodna! → aquatic hen (it’s a literal meaning, and this phrase is also an alternative name for a common moorhen in Polish)
  • rany koguta! → rooster’s wounds
  • psiakość! / psia kość! → dog’s bone
  • psiakostka! / psia kostka! → dog’s small bone
  • psiakrew! / psia krew! → dog’s blood (probably the strongest of expressions included on the list)
  • do stu wilków! → to a hundred of wolves
  • do kroćset! → to a multitude of hundreds (basically an expression of multiplying the irritation)
  • do licha! → to the likho (licho / likho is a Slavic demon)
  • pal licho! → burn the likho (used rather like ‘whatever!’)
  • do czorta! → to the chort (czort / chort is a Slavic demon, often described as a devil’s minion)
  • do pioruna! → to a lightning (one of phrases supposedly connected to the old cult of the Slavic god Perun
  • do stu piorunów! → to a hundred of lightnings
  • niech to piorun trzaśnie! → may a lightning thwack it
  • jasny pieron! → bright lightning (with archaic spelling of the word meaning a lightning, but warning: ‘pieron’ is considered a very offensive word in a few regions of Poland e.g. some parts of Silesia)
  • jasny piernik! → bright gingerbread
  • jasny gwint! → bright / obvious screw-thread
  • niech to kule biją! → may cannonballs* strike it (*or bullets)
  • cholera! → cholera (yes - the disease, and one of the strongest expressions here)
  • choina! / choinka! → small conifer / Christmas tree (euphemisms replacing the word ‘cholera’)

[side notes: the phrases as included above are used rather non-directly: words one could whisper under their breath, just to themselves. Most could be used also like filler words. Many of them are considered old-fashioned (though still fun to use). These are only some of popular examples. Might edit later!]

Letting labels define us

So, people say this about people who are stigmatized in some way or another:

  • “She has a disability, but she doesn’t let her label define her!”
  • “He happens to be gay, but he doesn’t let that label define him!”

And… it tends to be in the context of an article or video that’s literally about how their difference and the way it’s labelled has a profound impact on their life.

It rings false, because if labels didn’t matter, the article or video wouldn’t be about them. It matters that some people are disabled or gay or whatever other thing people are afraid to name in a straightforward way.

It’s important to send the message that we’re all more than one thing, and that no label or category completely defines who we are. It’s also important to acknowledge that differences don’t stop mattering when they are stigmatized. We need to be able to refer to important aspects of who we are without evasion or euphemism.

Please fire me. I got yelled at and almost sued by a woman asking me who were “Nikes.” She thought I was being prejudice against blacks. She called later and told me I was a liar and that they were shoes even though I told her they were shoes. I can’t stand these customers…

The politics of euphemism: Cop-talk for shooting a suspect.

By Jay Livingston, PhD

The police do not shoot people. Not any more. Apparently, the word shoot has been deleted from the cop-speak dictionary.

A recently released video shows a Chicago cop doing what most people would describe as shooting a kid. Sixteen times. That’s not the way the Chicago Police Department puts it.

Chicago Tribune: A “preliminary statement” from the police News Affairs division, sent to the media early the next morning, said that after he had refused orders to drop the knife, McDonald “continued to approach the officers” and that as a result “the officer discharged his weapon, striking the offender.”

In Minneapolis, Black Lives Matter is protesting what they think is the shooting of Jamar Clark by a police officer. How wrong they are. The police did not shoot Clark. Instead, according to the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension.

MPR News: At some point during an altercation that ensued between the officers and the individual, an officer discharged his weapon, striking the individual.

The police don’t shoot people. They discharge their weapons striking individuals, usually suspects or offenders. A Google search for “officer discharge weapon striking” returns 3.6 million hits.

Worse, the press often doesn’t even bother to translate but instead prints the insipid bureaucratic language of the police department verbatim.

Fearing for their safety and the safety of the public, they fired their guns, striking the suspect.

(Other sources on these stories do put the press-release prose in quotes. Also, in California, officers who discharge their weapons also usually “fear for their safety and the safety of the public.” I would guess that the phrase is part of some statute about police discharging their weapons)

The screenshot above is an example from the Wilkes Barre area. The writer nailed the lede: a police officer shot a suspect. But whoever wrote the headline had majored in Technical Language and Obfuscation rather than Journalism.

Does the language make a difference? I don’t know. Suppose the headlines two weeks ago had said, “In Paris, some people discharged their weapons striking individuals.”

Jay Livingston is the chair of the Sociology Department at Montclair State University. You can follow him at Montclair SocioBlog or on Twitter.