shkeevy; bubbies; more!

Jonathan Lighter wuxxmupp2000 at GMAIL.COM
Thu Jul 9 23:42:20 UTC 2009

For some reason I don't usually watch Bravo's _Real Housewives of New
Jersey_.  Anyway, they're real all right, with many typical NY/NJ linguistic
features. And boy, do they use 'em!

One Italian-American housewife likes to use the adjective "shkeevy."  A
viewer complained that it was "so '70s."  However, the only form of the word
I've encountered is "skeevy," without the [S].

She and one or two of the others also prefer [bUbiz] for the far more usual
[bubiz]. I've never heard that pronunciation before, but it is apparently a
survival of the very common 19th C. {bubbies}, which in my experience has
become obsolete in print (in favor of the vocalically ambiguous {boobies})
except in pseudo-Victorian um-literature.

And after several housewives ganged up on another in a strident argument,
she told the camera, "I was sitting there getting literally gangbanged."


The American Dialect Society -

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