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Three score and ten or more

Monday, October 31, 2005

I will be leaving early Wednesday morning for Williamsburg VA, where my wife the geneologist is going to try to trace down some of her forbears. I will try to write something cohereent before I go, but, for the nonce, I simply have a question about a foreign language (British English). I received last night, in an Email, a reaction to one of my blog posts that included the statement
"I can see that you are not a total wanker, so********" I perceived from the context that the comment was intended to be at least partially complimentary, or at least a back handed compliment. I wonder if anyone here would like to explain to me what a "wanker" is. The only thought that came to me was so* * * off beat that it wouldn't even be a back-handed compiment. Is the definition something that I would wish to carry on my semi-dignified blog? Do I really want to know?? Help somebody, age is quivvering with excitement (or is that just a little palsey)


At 5:48 PM, Blogger exMI said...

A wanker is kind of like a git but worse.

At 8:01 PM, Blogger Mahndisa S. Rigmaiden said...

10 31 05

Hey Three Score:
Check out Metrolingua's blog. I highlight her on my site for today and she is an urban linguist. Perhaps she can help! Hope you enjoy VA with your wife:)

At 5:25 AM, Blogger Ed Abbey said...

At least two branches of my family got their start in Virginia in the mid 1600's. I've got it on my list of states to visit someday in the future when I don't have to work for a living anymore.

At 2:02 PM, Blogger Patrick Joubert Conlon said...

In British English "wanking" means masturbation. To call someone a "wanker" means that you think they are good for nothing, useless and just sit around wanking all day instead doing the real thing.

At 2:04 PM, Blogger Patrick Joubert Conlon said...

And "git" by the way is actually the Arabic word for a pregnant camel. I don't know how it came to be used as a British insult.

At 3:19 PM, Blogger Saur♥Kraut said...

I always thought 'wanker' must be unsavory somehow...

Have a great time!

At 6:52 PM, Blogger Three Score and Ten or more said...

I suspected wanker must mean a masturbator, but I still hadn't figured our-and haven't-why "not a total wanker" should mean that he could accept my ideas. Oh well, I am pretty good with American semantics of the English language. That sounds wierd too.
I'll see you next week.


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