English Collection

日頃目に付いた覚えたい英単語、慣用句などの表現についてのメモです。

dyke

2012年04月30日 | 英語学習
Breakfast at Tiffany's の主人公は語り手ではなく、語り手と同じアパートに住む女性のHolly Golightlyの様だ。Hollyは語り手の事を何故か自分の弟の名前 "Fred" で呼びかけます。次に引用する文は自称作家の語り手 "Fred" が書いた短編小説を朗読しHollyに聴かせた後のHollyの台詞です。
'Is that the end?' she asked, waking up. She floundered for something more to say. 'Of course I like dykes themselves. They don't scare me a bit. But stories about dykes bore the bejesas out of me. I just can't put myself in their shoes.
"dyke" はこの後も何度も出てくるので意味を調べます。
・Macmillan Dictionary: offensive an offensive word for a lesbian (=woman who is gay)
・Cambridge Idioms Dictionary: slang a homosexual woman; a lesbian. Many people consider this word offensive.
・Wiktionary: (slang, pejorative) A lesbian, particularly one who appears masculine or acts in a masculine manner. This word has been reclaimed, by some, as politically empowering. (See usage notes.)
やたらに口にはできない言葉の様ですが、Wiktionary:には使用上の注意があるのでそれも見てみましょう。
Usage notes: In the sense of a gay woman, this term is generally derogatory when used by heterosexuals (and sometimes when used by non-heterosexuals), but, it is also used by some lesbians and bisexual women to refer to themselves, positively. A similar approach to the possibility of reclamation is evident in the use of the word queer among some lesbians, bisexual women, and others; see reclaimed word and reappropriation for discussion. It is important to note that many people do not believe that “queer” is able to be reclaimed, because of its fraught history and continued pejorative usage. Thus, the terms “dyke” and “queer” are both potentially liberatory while also being highly contested.
Hollyは後でこの言葉は自分に対して使っています。
"... - simply told her I was a dyke."
明日は上の引用文にある "bejesas"の意味を調べます。
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Golden Week

2012年04月29日 | 英語学習
今の時期の連休を以前はGolden Weekと言っていましたが、最近Golden Weekの言葉を聞かない気がします。景気が良くないせいでしょうか。TVでは大型連休と言っていました。
さて、今週のジョークのテーマはGoldです。 
Tom, the Commonwealth Gold Medal runner, was on his way to a bar with some friends.
At the door, the bouncer turned to him and said “Sorry, mate, you can’t come in here ? no denim.”
Tom was quite annoyed at this and retorted, “Don’t you know who I am? I’m Tom, the gold medal winner in 400m .”
“Then it won’t take you long to run home and change, will it?” replied the bouncer.
今年のオリンピックで日本人選手が沢山の金メダルを取れると良いですね。
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bougainvillaea

2012年04月28日 | 英語学習
私は車を運転していたので見えなかったのですが、藤の花が満開に咲いていると同乗者が言っていました。
昨日からブログで取り上げ始めたネタ本はTruman CapoteのBreakfast at Tiffany'sですが、Capoteの次ぎの話は HOUSE OF FLOWERSです。 その話に藤の花が次ぎの様に出てきました。
Royal's house was like a house of flowers; wistaria sheltered the roof, a curtain of vines shaded the windows, lilies bloomed at the door.
でも家の近くの公園の藤棚はまだ花は咲いていません。しかし西葛西駅前のハナミズキ("dogwood")は2~3日前に満開になりました。 家のベランダに鉢植えの柿やアボカドがありますが、最近若葉が出て来ました。しかしブーゲンビリアは正月まで花をつけていたのですが、2月に葉が全部落ちてしまい、その後未だに若葉が出てこないので枯れたのではないかと心配です。ところでブーゲンビリアを英語でなんと言うか、あるいはスペルも知らなかったのですが、CapoteのHOUSE OF FLOWERSに次ぎの様に出て来ました。
The house where they lived and worked was rickety, thin as a steeple, and frosted with fragile, bougainvillaea-vined balconies.
今日はこの難しいスペルを覚えたい。
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spit-image

2012年04月27日 | 英語学習

Nudgeを読み終えたので今度はまた小説を読むことにしました。Penguin BooksのModern Classic
シリーズのBreakfast at Tiffany's by Truman Capoteを図書館から借りたところ、Breakfast at Tiffany's だけではなく、他にも短編が含まれていて、Breakfast at Tiffany'sはその内の最初の話です。映画にBreakfast at Tiffany'sがあったのを知っていますが、観たことはないので、読み始めた小説の話と関係があるのかどうかも分かりません。
さてその本から最初に取り上げる単語は "spit-image" です。
話の語り手(名前はまだ分かりません)が馴染みのバーに行くと、日本人カメラマンが撮った写真を見せられます。
In the envelope were three photographs more or less the same, though taken from different angles: a tall delicate Negro man wearing a calicaco skirt and with a shy, yet vain smile, displaying in his hands and odd wood sculpture, an elongated carving of a head, a girl's, her hair sleek and short as a young man's, her smooth wood eyes too large and tilted in the tapering face, her mouth wide, over drawn, not unlike clown-lips. On a glance it resembled most primitive carving; and then it didn't, for here was the spit-image of Holly Golightly, at least as much of a likeness as a dark still thing could be.
Holly Golightlyは語り手と写真を見せているバーテンダーの共通の友達です。文脈からすると " spit-image" は写真に写っている木像とHolly Golightlyが似ている事を意味していると推測できますが、どうでしょう。
"spit-image" の形では辞書の項目にありませんでしたが、"spit and image" あるいは "spitting image" での説明を見つけました。
・Dictionary.com: spit and image, Informal . exact likeness; counterpart: Hunched over his desk, pen in hand, he was the spit and image of his father at work. Also, spitting image, spit 'n' image.
・Merriam-Webster's Learner's Dictionary: someone who looks very much like someone else - usually singular: She is the spitting image of her mother.
・The American Heritage Dictionary of Idioms: A precise resemblance, especially in closely related persons. For example, Dirk is the spitting image of his grandfather . This idiom alludes to the earlier use of the noun spit for "likeness," in turn probably derived from an old proverb, "as like as one as if he had been spit out of his mouth" (c. 1400). The current idiom dates from about 1900.
似ているどころかそっくりと言うことですね。

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stevedore

2012年04月26日 | 英語学習

April 15付け The Japan Times Onlineのメルマガサービスの記事を引用します。
U.S. vet pries lid off Agent Orange denials Thousands of barrels of Agent Orange were stored at U.S. bases in Okinawa in the 1960s and local stevedores were exposed to the highly toxic herbicide, according to one of only three American veterans who have won medical benefits because they handled the shipments.
"stevedore" は前にもどこかで見た単語ですが忘れています。文の最後に "they handled the shipments" とあるので、港湾労働者ではないかと推測できますが、辞書で確認します。
・Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary: one who works at or is responsible for loading and unloading ships in port: on the wharves, stevedores were unloading cargo from the far corners of the world
・Vocabulary.com: a laborer who loads and unloads vessels in a port: At 9.30 the head stevedore reports the cargo all trimmed down.
・Macmillan Dictionary: someone whose job is to move goods on and off ships. The British word is docker.
イギリス英語の "docker" なら覚える苦労はありませんが、"stevedore" は辞書の例文、 "Stevedores were unloading cargo from the far corners of the world.".を丸ごと覚えないとまた忘れそうです。

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panhandler

2012年04月25日 | 英語学習
NUDGE by R. H.Thaler and C. R. Susteinは最初2008年に出版され、WebにNUDGEのHP (www.nudges.org)を立ち上げたところ、色々なNUDGEの案や実例が寄せられたとして、私が読んでいる本には "Twenty More Nudges" と言う章が追加されています。
今日の単語はその章からです。
Parking meters instead of panhandlers. In 2007, the city of Denver began fighting homelessness with donation receptacles that resemble parking meters. The homeless meters are a well-designed nudge by the city to direct money--typically loose change--that would be given to panhandlers to community programs that provide meals, job training and education services, substance abuse help, and affordable housing.
"panhandler" は知らない単語ですが、文脈から "homeless" と同義語として使われている気がします。
ここで日本のhomelessと外国のhomelessの違いに気がつき、"panhandler" の意味が分かりました。
日本のhomelessはアルミ缶を集めるなど働く事はしても、お金をせびる人はまずいません。海外では、ニューヨークやロンドンなど大都会には必ず "begger" がいます。つまり、"panhandler" は "begger" の事でしょう。
鍋の柄の様な、"panhandler" の語源も気になるので辞書を見てみます。
多くの辞書は原形の "panhandle" の項目しかありません。
・Cambridge English Dictionary: to ask people that you do not know for money, especially in a public place: He was arrested for panhandling.
しかし、次ぎの辞書は "panhandle" の意味とその由来も載せていました。
・Collins English Dictionary: informal ( US ), ( Canadian ) to accost and beg from (passers-by), esp on the street: C19: probably a back formation from panhandler a person who begs with a pan
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vagary

2012年04月24日 | 英語学習

NUDGE by R. H.Thaler and C. R. SusteinのPrivatising Marriageの章に出てきた "vagary" は一年程前に取り上げていましたが、忘れていたので再度取り上げます。 
Also, it is sophisticated and wealthy couples who are most likely to enter into prenuptial agreements, to understand the law, and to obtain high-quality legal representation in the event of divorce. The result of all this is to leave most people vulnerable to the vagaries of chance--and to a legal system that has an astonishing degree of uncertainty.
今回は前回とは異なる辞書の意味を引用します。
・Vocabulary.com: an unexpected and inexplicable change in something (in a situation or a person's behavior, etc.): “the vagaries of the weather”; “his wealth fluctuates with the vagaries of the stock market”
Vocabulary.com:は更に詳しい説明が付いています。
*A vagary is an unexpected and unpredictable change, and the word is usually used in the plural. You might know from experience that the vagaries of winter weather make planning a vacation in February a risky proposition.
Vagary traces back to the Latin root meaning "wander," and you can think of a vagary as something that wanders. Events or situations that seem to change at random have vagaries. Whether the hottest new boy band will succeed or not is dependent on the vagaries of teenage enthusiasms. The vagaries of the real estate market will determine whether that swamp property you just bought is a gold mine or a disaster.
"vagary" だけで覚えようとしても忘れそうなので、"the vagaries of the weather" あるいは "the vagaries of the stock market" で覚えた方が良さそうです。

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police

2012年04月23日 | 英語学習
"police" は誰でも知っている単語ですがNUDGE by R. H.Thaler and C. R. SusteinのPrivatising Marriageの章に出てきた "police" は動詞なので、警察署/警官の意味ではありません。
As a matter of history, a primary reason for the official institution of marriage has been not to limit entry but to police exit--to make it difficult for people to abondon their commitments to one another. Of course, there are good reason for this form of policing, which can operate as a nudge or as much more.
...
But in the mordern era, exit is much less rigorously policed.
上の文での "entry" は結婚で、 "exit" は離婚を意味しています。さて、"police" を辞書で確認します。
・Collins English Dictionary: 5.to regulate, control, or keep in order by means of a police or similar force 6.to observe or record the activity or enforcement of ⇒ a committee was set up to police the new agreement on picketing
・Cambridge English Dictionary: to control the way in which a possibly dangerous substance is dealt with or a dangerous activity is done: The use of these chemicals must be carefully policed.
・Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary: to supervise the operation, execution, or administration of to prevent or detect and prosecute violations of rules and regulations: The international agency polices the development of atomic energy facilities.
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Hula Hoop

2012年04月22日 | 英語学習
昨日は福島へフラガールズを見に行って来ました。そこで今日はフラのジョークです。
Knock Knock.
Who's there?
Hula.
Hula who?
'P'
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Byzantine

2012年04月20日 | 英語学習
NUDGE by R. H.Thaler and C. R. SusteinのImproving School Choiceの章を読んでいます。
When parents pick schools, status quo bias plays a big role. The neighborhood school that one knows, failing or not, may be preferable to the unknown school half an hour away. In any case, the Byzantine nature of collecting and distributing school data makes it difficult for parents to think through their options.
"the Byzantine nature" がいきなり出てきて、これは何? ビザンチン帝国・時代と何の関係があるの?
何か特別な意味があるなら辞書に出ているでしょう。
・Macmillan Dictionary: complicated and difficult to understand: the byzantine power structure of the old department
・Merriam-Webster's Online Dictionary: often not capitalized a : of, relating to, or characterized by a devious and usually surreptitious manner of operation: a Byzantine power struggle b : intricately involved : labyrinthine: rules of Byzantine complexity
・Vocabulary.com: highly complex or intricate and occasionally devious: “the Byzantine tax structure”; "Byzantine methods for holding on to his chairmanship”
なるほど、この意味は複雑な模様のビザンチン芸術から発生した様です。
・Online Etymology: originally used of art style; later in reference to the complex, devious, and intriguing character of the royal court of Constantinople.
考えて見ると、政治、経済はもちろん人間社会はビザンチン様式であふれていますね。
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