English Collection



2015年06月30日 | 英語の本を読む

Raymond ChandlerのRed Windから取り上げる最後の表現です。
When I had them all loose in my left hand I held them like that for a while and thought. There wasn't really anything to think about. I was sure.
"To the memory of Mr. Stan Phillips," I said aloud. "Just another four-flusher." I flipped her pearls out into the water one by one at the floating seagulls.They made little splashes and the seagulls rose off the water and swooped at the splashes.
"four-flusher" はトランプのフォーフラッシュと関係があるようですが、どんな意味になるのでしょうか?
・Merriam-Webster: to bluff in poker holding a four flush; broadly: to make a false claim: bluff
・Wiktionary: (slang) A lowly, disreputable cheat or fraudster, especially at cards, especially a dull or unimaginative one


we had a moment

2015年06月29日 | 英語の本を読む

Raymond ChandlerのRed Windを読んでいます。
I pulled the string of pearls out of the loosely wrapped tissue paper in my pocket and slid them across to her. The silver propeller clasp winked in the light of the wall bracket. The little diamond winked. The pearls were as dull as white soap.
They didn't even match in size.
"You were right," she said tonelessly. "They are not my pearls."
The waiter came with my drink and she put her bag on them deftly. When he was gone she fingered them slowly once more, dropped them into the bag and gave me a dry mirthless smile.
I stood there a moment with a hand hard on the table.
"As you said-I'll keep the clasp." I said slowly: "You don't know anything about me. You saved my life last night and we had a moment , but it was just a moment. You still don't know anything about me. There's a detective downtown named Ybarra, a Mexican of the nice sort, who was on the job when the pearls were found in Waldo's suitcase. That is in case you would like to make sure."
"we had a moment " は何か意味深な感じですが、どんな "moment" があったのか辞書に説明があるでしょうか? スラング辞典のUrban Dictionaryに書かれている次の説明は上の引用文での(最初の)"moment" に当てはまると思います。
A silent moment between two people (either gender, hetrosexual, homosexual, or bi-sexual) in which prolonged eye contact is made and initial feelings of attraction are felt. Often referred to simply as a "moment."
後に出てくる "it was just a moment" の方は普通の「ほんの一瞬/一時」の意味ですね。


Which jacket to buy

2015年06月28日 | 英語の本を読む
My husband and I couldn't decide which jacket to buy for our granddaughter, so we asked the young salesman.
"If you were buying a jacket for your girlfriend," I said, "what would you get?"
"A bulletproof one," he said. "I'm married."

look at my etchings

2015年06月27日 | 英語の本を読む

今日紹介する表現は十数年前に知ったもので、もしかしてこれって日本語のエッチの語源かなと思った記憶があります。Raymond ChandlerのRed Windを読んでいるとこんな場面が出て来ました。
We were almost at my door. I jammed the key in and shook the lock around and heaved the door inward. I reached in far enough to switch lights on. She went in past me like a wave. Sandalwood floated on the air, very faint.
I shut the door, threw my hat into a chair and watched her stroll over to a card table on which I had a chess problem set out that I couldn't solve. Once inside, with the door locked, her panic had left her.
"So you're a chess player," she said, in that guarded tone, as if she had come to look at my etchings. I wished she had.
We both stood still then and listened to the distant clang of elevator doors and then steps-going the other way.
上の "as if she had come to look at my etchings" とは何の意味か分かりますか? 前置きで「エッチの語源かな」と書いたので推測できた勘の鋭い方がいるかも知れません。この "look at my etchings" は男が女性を自分の部屋に "Would you look at my etchings?" と言って誘う時の決まり文句だそうです。もちろん男の部屋には銅版画作品はありません。男は日本語で言うエッチがしたいのです。この表現を知った時にこれがエッチの語源だと確信しました。まだGoogleやインターネットのない時代だったので確認しませんでしたので、今回Googleでエッチの語源を調べましたが、変態のH説がもっとも有力なようで、私が確信した "Would you look at my etchings?" 説はどこにもありませんでした。
"Would you like to see my etchings?" についてもっと詳しいことはWikipediaに書かれています。Etchingの項のかなり下の方に "Etchings" euphemismの説明が参考になります。



2015年06月26日 | 英語の本を読む

今日の単語 "fence"は日本語にもなっていますが、Red Windの次の個所での意味はその日本語になっている意味ではありません。
"Waldo had been her chauffeur," I went on. "His name was then Joseph Coates. Her name is Mrs. Frank C. Barsaly. Her husband is a big hydroelectric engineer. Some guy gave her the pearls once and she told her husband they were just store pearls. Waldo got wise somehow there was a romance behind them and when Barsaly came home from South America and fired him, because he was too good-looking, he lifted the pearls.
"Ybarra lifted his head suddenly and his teeth flashed. "You mean he didn't know they were phony?"
"I thought he fenced the real ones and had imitations fixed up," I said.
・Oxford English Dictionary: Deal in (stolen goods): after stealing your ring, he didn’t even know how to fence it: You then made a business of fencing the goods you asked him to steal at your store for profit.
・Dictionary.com: Informal. to sell (stolen goods) to a fence.
あれ? これだと名詞の "fence" は動詞の "fence" を名詞化した意味ではないですね。同上の辞書で名詞の項を見ると次の説明がありました。
Informal. a person who receives and disposes of stolen goods.


I'll bite

2015年06月25日 | 英語の本を読む

Raymond ChandlerのRed Windからの抜粋です。
"It was an undercover job-from my angle," I said. "If you know what I mean." He reddened again, bit his teeth. I went on: "I got back from the city hall without telling anybody I knew Waldo. In due time, when I decided they couldn't find out where he lived that night, I took the liberty of examining his apartment." "Looking for what?" the big man said thickly.
"For some letters. I might mention in passing there was nothing there at all-except a dead man. Strangled and hanging by a belt to the top of the wall bed-well out of sight. A small man, about forty-five, Mexican or South American, well-dressed in a fawn-colored---.
"That's enough," the big man said. "I'll bite, Marlowe. Was it a blackmail job you were on?"
"I'll bite" はいかにも口語的な表現ですが、その意味は何でしょう? "bite" を辞書で見ます。
・Oxford English Dictionary: (Of a person) be persuaded to accept a deal or offer: a hundred or so retailers should bite
・Merriam-Webster: to accept a suggestion or an offer: offered them a deal but they wouldn't bite
・Wiktionary: (intransitive, metaphor) To accept something offered, often secretly or deceptively, to cause some action by the acceptor. I've planted the story. Do you think they'll bite?


on the make

2015年06月24日 | 英語の本を読む

今日取り上げるのは単語ではなく、Raymond Chandlerの "Red Wind" に出てきた口語表現です。
She switched her hat off and slipped out of the bolero jacket, fast. I grabbed them and wadded them into a mess under my arm. I took her elbow and turned her and we were going down the hall.
"I live in Forty-two. The front one across from yours, just a floor up. Take your choice. Once again-I'm not on the make."
She smoothed her hair with that quick gesture, like a bird preening itself. Ten thousand years of practice behind it.
"Mine," she said, and tucked her bag under her arm and strode down the hall fast. The elevator stopped at the floor below. She stopped when it stopped. She turned and faced me.
"on the make" の意味が分からないので辞書を引きます。
・Oxford: informal Intent on gain, typically in an unscrupulous way.: Mackintosh beckoned from across the park, then sat down next to him like a vagrant on the make.
・Dictionary.com: Aspiring and ambitious, esp in a ruthless and exploitive way; careeristic; hungry: The rookies are very much on the make
・Collins Dictionary:
1.(informal) out for profit or conquest
2.(slang) in search of a sexual partner
In a sense, of course, Blake realized that was how he had pigeon-holed Jerrold in his mind: a rather cheap man on the make.



2015年06月23日 | 英語の本を読む

"shyster" はRaymond Chandlerの探偵小説に頻繁に出てくる単語なので覚えたいと思います。次の文はGoldfishからの引用です。
Rush Madder was a shyster in the Quorn Building. An ambulance chaser, a small-time fixer, an alibi builder-upper, anything that smelled a little and paid a little more. I hadn't heard of him in connection with any big operations like burning people's feet.
Rush Madderは "ambulance chaser" とか "fixer" でもあるので、shyster は "shy" とは無縁の人に違いありません。辞書を見ます。
・Collins Dictionary: (informal, mainly US) a person, esp a lawyer or politician, who uses discreditable or unethical methods: It's hard to believe that one small-town shyster could have wrought such havoc just by forging a marriage licence.
・Cambridge English Dictionary: a dishonest person, especially a lawyer or politician: He's a real shyster.: What are those shyster politicians doing now?
やはり "shy" な人ではありませんね。Vocabulary.comの駄目押しの説明を読みます。
A shyster is someone who might rip you off or do something unethical in order to get his way.
A used car salesman might tell you a car is a thousand dollars, but when you read the fine print, it turns out you’ll pay a lot more. That salesman is a shyster — someone who lies and deceives for his own benefit. The word comes from the German Scheisser, which is a vulgar term for “worthless person.” Although it contains the word shy, it actually sounds more like heist, which makes sense, since shysters are basically trying to rob you.


scotch my alibi

2015年06月22日 | 英語の本を読む

Trouble is My Businessは読み終えましたが、この本には他にも短編が幾つか入っていて今日とりあげる表現はFinger Manと題された話にあったものです。
"Let's get a couple of more important things straightened out," I said. "Who takes the rap for Lou Harger?"
"What makes you so sure you don't?" Dorr asked nastily.
"My alibi's been polished up. I didn't know how good it was until I knew how close Lou's death could be timed. I'm clear now . . . regardless of who turns in what gun with what fairy tale . . . And the lads that were sent to scotch my alibi ran into some trouble."
最後に出てきた "scotch" はウイスキーとは関係ないことは分かりますがどんな意味があるのでしょうか? 辞書を見ます。
・Dictionary.com: to put a definite end to; crush; stamp out; foil: to scotch a rumor; to scotch a plan.
・Cambridge English Dictionary: to prevent something from being believed or being done: Her remarks were intended to scotch rumours of an imminent election date.
・Vocabulary.com: Don't get your hopes up: The verb to scotch has nothing to do with the well-known liquor. Instead, it means to prevent or stop something from happening.
To scotch is, most often, to prevent plans, efforts, or desires — as opposed to things — from coming about. You wouldn't say, for example, "turning off the flame is one way to scotch the steak." But you might say, "Our plans for spending the weekend camping in the mountains were scotched by the blizzard. No camping for us." Think of scotching as similar to throwing a wrench into someone's plans. Drinking Scotch is one way to scotch your efforts to remain sober.


Understanding Psychology, by Nicky Hayes

2015年06月21日 | 英語の本を読む

There is often quite a difference between what we can know and what we do.