the schmooze
Marjorie Gottlieb Wolfe
Syosset, New York

Profanity has existed for tens of thousands of years in every language.  It will continue to do so.

In 2012, Justin Bieber, at age 18, was on a 12-hour Air New Zealand flight.  He and his posse were blurting out cuss words, including some 4-letter selections.  A mother of two walked over and asked Justin to “stop yelling curse words and using that kind of language on a plane.  It’s not appropriate.”

White House florist, Ronn Payne, remembers seeing two butlers gathered outside the West Sitting Hall listening as the Clintons argued viciously with each other.  He  heard the First Lady bellow “goddamn bastard” at the president. Then he heard someone throw a heavy object across the room.  The rumor among the staff was that she threw a lamp.  Payne said he heard so much foul  (“brudik”) language in the Clinton White House.

F-a-s-t  f-o-r-w-a-r-d  to 2016.  Donald Trump’s 2005 video-tape shows him making vulgar and sexually charged comments about women.  Yes, he talks about grabbing women’s genitalia and attempting to have sex with a married (“khasene ghat”) woman.  He said married women would let him get away with such actions because he was a star.  “I just start kissing them…I don’t even wait.  And when you’re a star they let you do it.  You can do anything.”

After the video’s release, several GOP leaders have called on Trump to withdraw (“tsuriktsien”) from the race.  Former allies have harshly condemned his  behavior.  Sen. Kirsten Gellibrand (D-N.Y.) called Trump’s remarks “sickening” and have “no place in the presidential race.”

Trump engaged in “locker room” talk  which degrades women.  He insulted Rosie O’Donnell, Megan Kelly, and Alicia Machado.   He called his then pregnant (“shvanger”) wife, Melania, a “monster” during an appearance on Howard Stern’s radio show in 2005.  He described her as a “blimp.”  “You know, they just blow up, right?”  It makes us wonder if we want a sexual predator moving into 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

What is “locker room” talk? defines locker-room talk as “The crude (“roy”),  vulgar, offensive and often sexual tirade that guys throw at each other usually in high school locker rooms, which exists solely for the purpose of male comedy and is not to be taken seriously (“oyfan emes”).”  (Note:  The Yiddish has been added.)

Cecile Lopez Lilles (“Locker-room talk,”, 5/9/12) wrote about chitchatting at a table at an upscale hotel bar (with a dress code).  A male friend (AKA “Mr. Potty Mouth”) approached everyone with what everyone thought was “pleasantries.”  Instead, he said, to the lady doctor, “So when are we finally having sex?” followed by a string of similarly flavored announcements—all sexual innuendos.  Her friend’s attention-getting repertoire resembled Tourettes-like verbal vomit.

Another friend quipped nonchalantly to the potty-mouthed man, “What kind of car do you drive?”  Volvo, perhaps? Because if it’s not, don’t even dream about it.”

Mr. Potty Mouth skulked away.  Cecile Lilles wrote, “What Mr. Potty Mouth unleashed that night is talk that belongs within the confines of a locker room, where only like-minded men are allowed and as tightly insulated as possible from the earshot of proper ladies.”

Ms. Lilles was absolutely right….and Donald Trump needs a crude awakening!  His first attempt at amends was worthless (“nishtik”)!  In a statement on Friday, Oct. 7, in which he showed no remorse (“kharote”), he attacked former Bill Clinton, husband of Democratic nominee, Hillary Clinton.  “I apologize if anyone was offended,” Trump said of what he called “locker-room banter.”

His second effort wasn’t much better (“beser”).  In a video released late Friday, he talked about how traveling for his campaign has changed him.  He apologized, then called the situation, “nothing more than a distraction.”  And he made a veiled threat that he would continue to attack the Clintons at Sunday night’s debate.

Later, he said, “Anyone who knows me knows those words don’t represent who I am.”

MARJORIE WOLFE’S advice to Donald Trump:

“Words are like eggs dropped from great heights; you can no more call them back than ignore the mess they leave when they fall.”  (Jodi Picolt, “Salem Falls”)


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Marjorie Gottlieb Wolfe is the author of
two books:
yiddish for dog and cat loversbook
"Yiddish for Dog & Cat Lovers" and
"Are Yentas, Kibitzers, & Tummlers Weapons of Mass Instruction?  Yiddish
Trivia."  To order a copy, go to her

NU, what are you waiting for?  Order the book!

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