Lately, I was talking about euphemisms in my English class – a subject that I find highly entertaining. Not everybody might know what a euphemism is, so here is the definition according to Merriam-Webster:
Euphemism: the substitution of an agreeable or inoffensive expression for one that may offend or suggest something unpleasant
Most euphemisms that I could find were related to unemployment, death or the use of the washrooms (ha, see: I’ve already used a euphemism!). Which makes sense, as none of those subjects are very pleasant topics to talk about.
Now, I do speak Spanish but not to a degree that I would be familiar with a whole lot of Spanish euphemisms, but there is one that I do know very well: If you want to buy a used car, it isn’t called “used” (usado), but “seminuevo” = “semi new”. Now isn’t that nice? I love the idea behind that and decided that once I turn… let’s say 50, I will call myself semi young from then on.”Semi” is a great euphemism builder, don’t you think? No, I am not fat, I am semi slim. No, she is not dumb, she is semi intelligent. No, Dear, my new dress wasn’t expensive, it was semi cheap. I could go on forever with this!
So as you can see, I got a little inspired and came up with more euphemisms for my Mexican everyday life. Here’s my list:
Tardiness: creative time management (the Mexican euphemism for that is “manana”, by the way)
Poor craftmanship: follow-up business guarantee
Unreliability: suspense feature
Leak: automatic water dispenser
Bureaucracy: patience builder
Poverty: creativity enhancer
Waiting: state decreed resting time
Mexican postal service:mail scavanger hunt
I think, this will make life so much nicer! What do you think? Any euphemisms you have created and would like to share?