Yiddish Demystified

8-Yiddish-Jewish-Words2When I was growing up, the lady who owned our local deli used to hold my cheeks and call me  “Shanya Punim.”  I always thought she was talking about pudding and I never understood why.   I was probably 20 when I learned that Shayna Punim  meant – “pretty face.”

One of the things I enjoy about Yiddish is how some of the words actually feel like their meaning.   Shmootz (dirt/yuk) for example.  There is no other way to describe shmootz, except that it’s… shmootz.

Another is Mazel Tov (congratulations).   There’s just something about the words coming as I speak them…I feel jubilant just saying it.

I tried to put some Yiddish in my conversation this morning.

Me: “Did you get the eye shmootz  from the dogs face?”

Him:   “I did!”

Me (petting the dog):    “Shayna punim.”

Me (to him):   Mazel Tov!

I hope you can find a few minutes and watch this video of some Jewish Seniors explaining Yiddish.

Grab a  nosh and settle in to hear the mishigas kibitzing all about  The Mysteries Of Yiddish

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