My two favourite words are….

I love language and words in particular. So today I was wandering around my house when the thought came to me, “what is my favourite word”. You guessed it I was not overly busy this morning!

A few words immediately sprang to mind, words like “goodnight”, “love you”, “Drink?”, “Hi ya”, “holiday”, etc. However these are not the words I had in mind. I meant actual words, both the sound of them and their meaning.

One which springs to mind was a word my Dad often used to describe something he saw us wearing that was very bright and summery. He would say “That’s very salubrious”.  I know it does not exactly mean what he said, but I loved that word as for me it seemed to perfectly describe what it meant. However it’s not really one I get a chance to use often so I decided not to rank it as one of my favourites.photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/crdot/5510506796/">crdotx</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/">cc</a>

Maybe it’s a reflection on myself but my top two words (three really, but the second one is always said as if one word)  are, “Gobshite”, and “Feckin eejit”.  Aren’t they just magnificent. Go on try them. I bet you already know someone who these words perfectly describe.

I think the reason I like these words so much is because they both mean the same thing, but on a different scale, and to my mind there is no other more suitable alternative expression in the English language to describe this individual. If you want to know what a “Gobshite” is, well it’s a “Feckin eejit”, and vice verse.

I can remember when we were ski ing in Italy one year we stayed in a lovely small family run hotel. One night a guest, with too much drink on board, got very obnoxious. Eventually he had to be removed from the Hotel. As it was a small establishment most of the guests witnessed the proceedings. Afterwards we were sitting with the family and they were speaking of this individual. They were Italian so as you can imagine it was a loud discussion. When it came to describing him they struggled, “He is a, what you say, a …” they began, and my sister piped up “A Gobshite, he’s a Gobshite”.

Even though they had no idea what it meant their eyes lit up and they immediately latched onto it and felt it. “Ha, yes Gobshite”, they said. “Gobshite”, “he is a Gobshite”. I cannot begin to tell you how often they repeated the word.

It’s not a word I personally would use lightly to describe someone. They would have to be on the upper scale of annoying. My lower scale word of choice, which I must admit I use regularly is “feckin eejit”. This I apply to all manner of people. Car drivers in particular seem to come to mind. Those who drive too slow or too fast. Those who don’t let me out, or who break the traffic lights. Equally I apply it to those I am driving behind who do let people out and who stop on the amber light at traffic lights! I love it, and as I say it aloud I instantly feel less annoyed.

I first fell in love with “feckin eejit” when I was at school. As a teenager “feckin eejits” were everywhere. My teachers were “a bunch of feckin eejits”, the nun who was principal was “a big feckin eejit”, and any teacher who annoyed me looking for homework or giving out about my test results was an “absolute feckin eejit”.

However as time went on I think I began to become immune to the impact of this word. It became too tame a description to apply to those who really annoyed me. There were some individuals who sent me into orbit. I disliked the vulgarity of a curse such a F*ck, so I adopted what I found to be the perfect alternative, “Gobshite”. A definite step up from “feckin eejit”. Classmates who reminded teachers of tests or homework, and those who regularly asked a question just before the bell rang for end of class were very definitely in this new category. “Gobshites”

Over the years I have never found any other word or words to replace these two as my favourites, despite my reading many books and receiving a reasonable level of education. Now that you have heard them maybe you too will agree with me. If not I’m curious, have you a favourtie word or words? Maybe one a bit more polite than my own? Let me know if you do.

Thanks for reading and I hope you have had a day free from “feckin eejits and Gobshites”.

photo credit: crdotx via photopin cc

photo credit: ferg2k via photopin cc

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51 thoughts on “My two favourite words are….

    1. Yes another good one. And to those reading who don’t speak our Irish English when you say “tool” it is an alternative to eejit, not a reference to a work tool! 🙂

  1. Hehe I was expecting some long, luscious, onomatopoeic words from you…. 😉 So I had a good chuckle when you shared your top two and they are pretty good. I’ll have to come back to you after a little think about mine 😉

    1. I knew that might occur to some, and I hoped they wouldn’t be too disappointed when they heard! Bet you have a few good sciency words in your repertoire.

      1. Ooh now that you say it, I love the word “dinoflagellates” … they are tiny phytoplankton that I know very little about but their name has always stuck with me 😉 … there was some quirky poem in my college biology book called “death by dinoflagellates”!

        1. Oh that’s a word and a half. I’m not sure I’d be able to remember it but I’d love to throw it out there some day. I knew you’d have a good one. Thanks for that.
          I have also never heard of that classic poem Death by dinoflagellates! 🙂

  2. “Colorful’ words are always ‘special’ depending on where the speaker comes from. Then, the pronunciation should be near perfect to convey the exact emotion. (laughs)

    1. Yes accents do make a big difference to how we really hear a word. I’m not sure if these words are peculiar to Ireland but I love them.

  3. I’m not sure if I could call this one of my favourite words, but I do love the word ‘Tackie’. It’s a Limerick word for runners/trainers. I don’t think I’ve ever heard it used by somebody who isn’t from, or at least spent a lot of time in, Limerick.

    1. Good one. I’ve never heard “tackie” used for runners, only for cheap jewellery! I must ask my kids who are at college there have they heard it.

  4. Fliphendry, up in Tyrone we use the word “gutties” for trainers. Who knows? It must have made sense to someone at some time…
    Tric, I enjoy both yours as when I use them here in the States it provokes the same level of hilarity as you experienced in Italy.
    I am nostalgic for “quer” that we use back home: “You’re quer craic…You’re a quer gobshite.” I think it has a poetic sound. No possible opportunity to use it in the States. Tried. Result: blank stares.
    The noise my mum made when she wanted us to shut up as kids was a good sound too: Wheeeeeeeeesshht!
    Sure shut us up…

    1. My parents are Donegal so I am very familiar with “gutties” although my mom used the word for those small little slip on type runners.
      And quer is a great word “Ach Jesus, he’s a quer nice fella”. As for wheeeesshht my Granda lived with us and when the news was on that is all we heard!
      I love a lot of the Northern words, as they are spoken with a northern accent and do not mean what they say, such as “wild” as in “wile”, “oh you’re wile good”
      I am so enjoying this post as the comments are great getting to read others words and in most cases agree, as some great choices have been suggested.

  5. Ha! Love this idea for a post, favorite words. I will have to think about mine. And I do like Gobshite. Never heard that one before 🙂 I will save it for just the right person/occasion.

    1. Glad you liked it. if you think of a word do call back and let us know. I’m glad you liked my choice. Hope it comes in useful some day.

  6. Oh yes, two fantastic words, I particularly like ‘gobshite’. It just really says it all!
    I quite like ‘obnoxious’ too.
    And I loved the word ‘discombobulated’ when I firs heard it…. which actually wasn’t all that long ago!! It perfectly describes the state I am most commonly in :-/ !!xx

    1. Do. Have you any words which are common to where you live but not elsewhere? Here in Ireland we have lots of them depending on where you live.

      1. One that I’ve never heard anywhere else is “jigaboo.” It’s a derogatory term for a black person. And believe me, I’m glad I’ve never heard it in many years.

        We also have “jeet” in the south. When someone comes to visit you always ask, “Jeet?” In other words, “Did you eat?”

        🙂

  7. Lord aMighty! but I love the Irish! There is NO one who can say “feckin'” like the Irish. And Gobshite…… no other accent can carry that off at all. 🙂 I love these words.

    Add an Irish accent to any word and it’s my favorite. 😉

  8. Just love your choices. Two that spring to mind from Waterford are ‘boy’ and girl/ie.’ I love them and hate them in equal measure. It somehow gave me comfort when the lady cleaning my late mother’s (aged 88) room in hospital said to her: ‘Don’t you worry about a thing, girlie.’
    But, when walking down street to ‘Well, girl’ from a ‘feckin’ eejit’ I get ‘rippin mad.’

    1. Oh yes here in Cork “Buy and Gerl” are also part of everyday speech, such as “hey buy how the goin?”, As I come from Dublin even after all these years I still would never say this. How interesting to hear you actually got comfort hearing it though when your mom was unwell. I am loving all the comments on this.

  9. Ha, something we’ve got in common – I use ‘gobshite’ a lot as well

    it’s a fairly common word in Scotland – [further evidence of the close connection between the Scots and Irish?] 😆

    1. How is it that I’d have guessed you’d be a regular user of Gobshite?, But it is a great word to have when the need arises and that mega feckin eejit comes your way. Sure I’d say we’re as good as related Duncan. I think of all the countries in the world most Irish would accept that the Scottish are the most like us.

  10. Dipstick – which also means a gobshite but a really dim gobshite.

    I love the word gnarled. There are some words that I love the way they roll around the mouth.

    1. Two great words. I agree Dipstick is so perfect but as you say a bit tame. More to describe a “blonde” than someone who is so v v annoying,
      Gnarled is a wonderful word. It perfectly captures what it means.Thanks Lorna. Two great contributions.

  11. tric, i love both of them so, so much. i wish we used it here and i will begin a personal campaign by using them whenever they apply. our family’s personal favorite is ‘jackass’, or ‘jackhole’, but neither begins to describe the level of annoying that your words hit so perfectly. love them.

    1. Jackass is known over here but rarely used. I’ve never heard of Jackhole.
      I do hope some day some where down the road someone annoys you and the first two words that spring to mind for you are Feckin eejit or Gobshite! 🙂

  12. Loved this post, and the comments too! What I find over here in England is if you refer to someone as a “feckin eejit”, no one is really offended (well not often). If you call them a “fucking idiot” (try this with a received BBC pronunciation), it goes down really badly. I don’t know why this should be!

    1. I think any word with Fuck in it is not well received. Over here we are lucky we get to insult to our hearts content and people do not take umbridge.
      I agree the comments on this post are some of my favourite ever.

  13. Ha Ha! Love eejit and gobshite. My dad and uncle would pronounce it ‘gabshite’. When they said it, we’d all laugh our heads off. Prounciation was due to the strong Belfast accent I suppose. I did some etymology on eejit for an essay for my degree. must dig it out and see where it came from.

    1. Oh wow an actual essay on eejit! Let me know if you remember its origin.
      Sorry for the long delay in my commenting life is mad at the moment. “Mad” I think that’s become another Irish world not understood elsewhere, from the Fr Ted series, “That’s mad Ted”.

      1. Ha ha! Don’t worry Tric. Don’t know how you keep up with all your comments and blog reading. I’ll have a look at the essay. Think it may be a bit crap though, was from 2nd year and I was getting through by the skin of my teeth back then!

  14. Fantastic! This really made me laugh out loud, perhaps being a Scot could be one reason, as so much of this is familiar. I wonder if you can get a salubrious gobshite, or if that isn’t a contradiction! Sounds like a feckin’ eejit that is totally hammered!

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