Thursday, July 14th, 2011
22

Woman Says Word Wrong


There are enough reasons to mock Michele Bachmann that making fun of her inability to pronounce the Yiddish word "chutzpah" seems kind of churlish and beside the point. I mean, it's not even her language! Still, it does bear an eerie resemblance to a moment from one of the greatest cultural disasters of all time.

Perhaps we can hope life imitates art, right?

22 Comments / Post A Comment

IBentMyWookie (#133)

Oh. I thought you were going to link to RHONY Ramona's pronunciation of "kud-oose"

(Confidential to Balk: your references are aging you)

jolie (#16)

@IBentMyWookie (Eh, his gray nose hairs already took care of that)

Rollo (#3,202)

Isn't Ishtar supposed to be actually pretty good? (I dunno!)

jfruh (#713)

@Rollo I saw it when it first came out (I was 13) with my mother and we both really liked it? I was 13 though. I don't know what my mother's excuse was.

barnhouse (#1,326)

@jfruh We saw it not that long ago and thought it was a lot of fun really.

queensissy (#1,783)

@Rollo First half is very funny, I think. "Hot Fudge Love" is an excellent song.

grandpa27 (#804)

What's the matter with you shnuks, I thought we were talking chutzpah.

keisertroll (#1,117)

So the "CH" in "Choire" is silent now. I'm really confused.

whizz_dumb (#10,650)

@keisertroll [woy-ree]

Matt (#26)

It's pronounced, "Ms. Sicha."

ejcsanfran (#489)

She's a shonda to my people.

barnhouse (#1,326)

Well finally I can relate to Michele Bachmann because if there is a way to mispronounce a word, I will find and deploy it (and I am married to an Englishman! I get let in for the most colossal amount of mockery, that way, cf. Cholmondeley, Caius, Magdalen, Dalziel, etc. etc.)

Mindpowered (#948)

@barnhouse

Mary Modlin doesn't have the same ring does it.

barnhouse (#1,326)

@Mindpowered haha! (Maudlin, I always think.)

You should hear how she pronounces M-e-x-i-c-a-n.

annie (#16,831)

Another slow learner…I guess he didn't learn anything working on the kibbutz in Israel.

Ganya (#5,212)

A couple years back, my parents, who live in Bachmann's district, returned home to find a very long message on their ancient telephone answering machine. As best as they could tell — and they never did completely solve the mystery — Bachmann's campaign had called their number inadvertently and patched it into one of the Congresswoman's periodic conference calls with her supporters in the district. The answering machine preserved an extensive portion of the call. It was devoted to Bachmann explaining the importance of the spelling of her last name. As she was sure her listeners were aware, when spelled with two "n"s, "Bachmann" is a German name, making it a name wholly distinct from "Bachman," whose single "n"– she also was sure her listeners were aware — marks it not as German but as Jewish.

Niko Bellic (#1,312)

@Ganya You'd think not only that there is much greater chance that she is German than Jewish, but that it would also work more to her favor, seeing how Minnesota is 38% German, and only 1% Jewish (Wikipedia):

Over 75.0% of Minnesota's residents are of Western European descent, with the largest reported ancestries being German (38.6%), Norwegian (17.0%), Irish (11.9%), and Swedish (9.8%).

A 2008 survey by the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life showed that 32.0% of Minnesotans were affiliated with Mainline Protestant traditions, 21.0% with Evangelical Protestant traditions, 28.0% with Roman Catholic traditions, 1.0% each with Jewish, Islamic, Buddhist, and Black Protestant traditions, smaller amounts for other faiths, and 13.0% unaffiliated.

Ganya (#5,212)

@Niko Bellic Those numbers skew even further Scandinavian, German and Polish Protestant and Catholic in the rural section of Bachmann's constituency where my parents live. That's what made her weird "don't worry, I'm not a Jew" dog-whistle so unmotivated and sinister. I would be shocked to learn anybody in those parts would've thought either "-man" or "-mann" could be anything but a solid German name. (The Germans of central Minnesota have not been as careful as she might hope about preserving their racial purity by holding on to their second "n"s.) Outside of Minneapolis in the days before Hubert Humphrey, you'd have a hard time finding a native antisemitism in the state that cared enough about actually existing Jews to be paranoid about policing their difference so rigorously. That stuff came in with the militias and the farm crisis (Louis Malle's great GOD'S COUNTRY documents the shift starkly.) As T.D. Mischke, the true voice of the state (Keillor is strictly for the theme restaurant market), says, "I was born in Minnesota, but the longer I live here, the more I think I'm going to die in Wyoming."

Aatom (#74)

Zoe at The Dish is having trouble spelling "Balk" correctly as well. http://bit.ly/rq4k10

Mr. B (#10,093)

@Aatom: Schmendriks everywhere.

An ex-bf from the Isle of Knife recently asked, "What's chuhts-PAH?" and it was just so damn adorable, also a cheerful reminder that I've got a direct line to a deft thrust into the jugular come the nomination.

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