Schvitzing and Schlepping
It occurred to me that I haven’t given a Yiddish lesson in awhile. And since summer is upon us, and I will hopefully be moving soon, the two most-likely-to-be-uttered words are going to be “schvitzing” and “schlepping.” So that you can follow along with my exciting travels, a brief lesson may be in order.
Schvitz Essentially, “sweat.” But it’s so much more than sweat. You can be schvitzing after a good workout, or just stand outside and schvitz, especially if it’s hot out. Since Jews aren’t really known for their athletic prowess (apologies to Sandy Koufax), generally – we just schvitz if the air conditioner isn’t working. I assume the Orthodox Jews are always schvitzing with the big black hats and the caftans. Also, you can go take a schvitz. Old people don’t pretend to go to fancy spas and “infuse therapeutic oils into virgin cedar.” They go take a schvitz with the boys. Personally, I hate to schvitz. I will do almost anything to avoid it and yet – in the summer? I pretty much melt.
Schlep Thanks to “The Great Schlep,” I think Sarah Silverman may have gotten this one covered, but because it’s one of my most-oft used words (“oy” excluded). By definition it means “to lug” but it’s so much more fun to say. I can schlep stuff up stairs, I can schlep myself to work in the morning, and sometimes – I can even look like a schlep. I am somewhat struggling on how to describe this state of being. A person can look like a schlep and be a “a schlepper” if they kinda look like a sack of potatoes, or that they are just schlepping themselves along. Sometimes, if I am just schlepping around town, doing errands – or maybe going to the beach (can’t avoid schvitzing there!) and need to carry everything, I will grab a “schlep bag” – some kind of “blah” bag to carry all my stuff. It probably has a bit of schmutz on it.
Bonus points if any non-native speakers can add these words to their vocabulary. And hopefully soon (too nervous to blog about it until the lease is signed) I will be able to write endlessly about my new apartment, and how annoying it is to schlep everything around by myself until Frank gets home, and how schvitzy I am going to be, moving at the end of August.