8 Foreign Expressions That Sound Texan

by Turner Wright Apr 14, 2017

1. German, a face in need of a fist.

At first glance, Germans and Texans have a lot in common. In fact, so many German descendants are still in Texas after their homesteading ancestors came over they have a very distinct dialect – just ask one what a “stink cat” is. Nevertheless, the original language has such delightful insults, including something you might hear after a few too many Shiners downed in a Texas bar: backpfeifengesicht, or a face badly in need of a good punching.

2. Norway, crazy.

The word “Texas” in Norway has become synonymous with “crazy”. If you see a bird swoop down and pick up a cat, you’d be entirely within your rights to say, “wow, that is so Texas” in Scandinavia. Supposedly the origin for this habit started with the flood of western movies, but I wouldn’t expect Texans to start using their own state name to describe acts of lunacy anytime soon.

3. Japan, to continue is power.

There are many parallels between Texas and Satsuma (modern Kagoshima): we were both regions in the southern parts of our respective countries with unique dialects who struggled for independence. We both had strong leaders who seemed to be surrounded by folklore: Saigo Takamori and Sam Houston (though Davy Crockett might be a better comparison). One popular proverb in Japan is keizoku wa chikara nari, or “to continue is power”. If a Texan had said this? “GIT R DONE!”

4. Bulgaria, you’re as ugly as a salad.

Telling a Texan he or she needs to eat a salad instead of a thick juicy steak is insulting enough, so I think it’s safe to say Bulgarians share our affinity for meat and potatoes. Grozna si kato salata… remember that next time a vegan insults you.

5. Georgia, I accidentally ate the whole thing.

The only problem with this Eastern European expression used in Texas is that it implies you don’t know what you’re doing when it comes to food. Texans know exactly that they’re stuffing themselves beyond the limits of human capacity when they dig into a BBQ dinner or some Tex-Mex… we just don’t care. If your meal is so delicious you just can’t stop inhaling it? Shemomedjamo.

6. Denmark, waking up in the morning still drunk from the night before.

It doesn’t take much imagination to understand why this Danish word might appeal to Texans or young Americans. If there’s one thing worse than waking up in a foul mood after a Texas night (HT to Norway), it’s having to use words to communicate. Expressing your current condition with a single word like Bagstiv is something all Texans can get behind.

7. Czech Republic, it’s splashing on his lighthouse.

If there’s one aspect of Texas lingo that has made it so appealing to the world at large, it’s our tendency to insult and explain the hard parts of life with some down-home folksy humor, for example:

“If I only had an extra $10,000…”

“Yeah, well, if a frog had wings, he wouldn’t bump his ass when he flew.”

Although the Czech expression šplouchá mu na maják is uniquely suited to life in their part of the world, it’s just about as earthy as saying “he’s a few sandwiches short of a picnic.” Here’s your sign.

8. Ghana, moving hot food around your mouth.

Texans eat big, eat fast, and worry about the consequences later (even Austinites can’t resist some of our greasy fatty options). Ghana probably developed this word before there even was a state of Texas, but we can take their inspiration and use it wisely. Your friend just stumbled out of a bar at 2 AM and immediately bit into a hot sausage before letting it cool? He’d better be doing pelinti. You like the pizza fresh out of the oven and don’t care if the cheese burns off the roof of your mouth? Pelinti.

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