[Ads-l] go = urinate, transitive; shishi (1974?)

Geoffrey Nathan geoffnathan at WAYNE.EDU
Sun Nov 19 16:07:19 EST 2017

These 'go' verb-X combinations are certainly not transitive in any normal sense, and are probably related to go+Sound constructions like

'go bang/pop/whoosh'

work just fine, and also can be seen in varying tenses:

I went shi shi three times last night.

The baloon went pop right in his face.


Geoffrey S. Nathan
WSU Information Privacy Officer (Retired)
Emeritus Professor, Linguistics Program

geoffnathan at wayne.edu

Nobody at Wayne State will EVER ask you for your password. Never send it to anyone in an email, no matter how authentic the email looks.

From: American Dialect Society <ADS-L at LISTSERV.UGA.EDU> on behalf of Ben Zimmer <bgzimmer at GMAIL.COM>
Sent: Sunday, November 19, 2017 3:08 PM
Subject: Re: go = urinate, transitive; shishi (1974?)

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Poster:       Ben Zimmer <bgzimmer at GMAIL.COM>
Subject:      Re: go = urinate, transitive; shishi (1974?)

I agree with Larry that "go" doesn't need to be understood as transitive in
these cases, and that "go pee/poo" works as a serial verb. Interestingly,
though, the OED entries for "pee-pee" and "wee-wee" suggest "go X" might
have originated as an elliptical form of "go (do/make) X," supporting the
reading of X as a noun rather than a verb. Either way, I'd say "go" here is
intransitive and takes a verb complement of some sort, elliptical or no.

pee-pee, n.2
 1. nursery. =3D pee n.5
1923   J. Manchon Le Slang 220   To do peepee.
1941   E. P. O'Donnell Great Big Doorstep x. 143   Commado said, =E2=80=98W=
hen them
twins get in the show like lass time, one's gotta make pee-pee, the udda
one gotta climb on the seat [etc.].=E2=80=99
1962   B. J. Friedman Stern i. 58   Do you still make peepee in your pants?
1969   N. Freeling Tsing-Boum xiii. 92   Still, one was only a human being
and one had to do pipi from time to time.
1998   L. Jackson Grange Hill (BBC TV Script, 1st draft)    You went off
for a pee-pee and that's the last anybody saw of you.
wee-wee, n.
 1. Urine; an act of urination; to do (have, etc.) a wee-wee, to go (make)
wee-wee, to urinate. Cf. water n. 17b.
1937   E. Partridge Dict. Slang 943/1   Wee-wee, a urination; esp. do a
wee-wee..late C. 19=E2=80=9320.
1938   Life & Health Sept. 19/2   If he wants to urinate, it's, =E2=80=98Mo=
wee, wee, duty.=E2=80=99
1948   A. N. Keith Three came Home x. 184   Our barrack..smelled of kids,
pots, and wee-wee.
1955   J. P. Donleavy Ginger Man xvi. 175   If you'll excuse me a moment, I
must make wee wee.
1961   J. Stroud Touch & Go xiii. 138   He made his voice deliberately
offensive: =E2=80=98He's gone to do a wee-wee.=E2=80=99
1969   M. Braithwaite Never sleep Three in Bed xvii. 76   Hub and I had to
go wee wee, and when advised by Mother that we were to go upstairs instead
of in the back yard we took the stairs two at a time to see if such a thing
could be true.
1982   J. Scott Uprush of Mayhem vi. 67   When he needed a wee-wee he did
it in a corner of the hut.

(This reduplicated baby-talk obviously forms a strong analogical model for
"shishi" in Hawaiian English.)

On Sun, Nov 19, 2017 at 2:59 PM, Laurence Horn <laurence.horn at yale.edu>

> > On Nov 19, 2017, at 2:33 PM, Barretts Mail <mail.barretts at GMAIL.COM>
> wrote:
> >
> > The Oxford Living Dictionaries (https://en.oxforddictionaries
> .com/definition/go <https://en.oxforddictionaries.com/definition/go>) and
> Wiktionary (https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/go <
> https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/go>) have the meaning of
> =E2=80=9Curinate/defecate=E2=80=9D as only intransitive.
> >
> > But =E2=80=9Cgo pee/poo=E2=80=9D must surely be transitive, with a limi=
ted range of
> objects meaning urine or feces.
> Not sure I agree.  =E2=80=9CPee/poo=E2=80=9D doesn=E2=80=99t really satis=
fy the tests for direct
> objects:
> *Poo was gone by the baby.
> *Pee was gone by the beer-drinkers.
> It doesn=E2=80=99t even seem to pattern as a noun phrase:
> *What I need to go is pee/poo.
> *The pee that I went got on my shoes.
> =E2=80=9Cgo pee=E2=80=9D and =E2=80=9Cgo poo=E2=80=9D seem to be complex =
intransitive verbs or serial
> verbs, rather than transitive verbs + objects.
> I=E2=80=99m not even sure I can inflect =E2=80=9Cgo=E2=80=9D in this sequ=
ence, although they=E2=80=99re
> easy to find on the web:
> ?The baby went poo.
> ?You went pee on my shoes.
> For those who find such examples unacceptable =E2=80=9Cgo pee=E2=80=9D ma=
y be closer to
> =E2=80=9Cgo fetch=E2=80=9D, =E2=80=9Cgo take a nap=E2=80=9D, =E2=80=9Cgo =
fuck yourself=E2=80=9D, or other serial verb
> sequences which also don=E2=80=99t inflect, although I concede that =E2=
=80=9CThe baby=E2=80=99s
> going poo=E2=80=9D is a bit better (grammatically at least) than *The dog=
=E2=80=99s going
> fetch.
> LH
> >
> > An alternative for pee found in Hawai'i is =E2=80=9Cshishi=E2=80=9D bor=
rowed from
> Japanese (search for =E2=80=9Cshishi=E2=80=9D on https://en.wiktionary.or=
> /%E5%B0%BF#Japanese <https://en.wiktionary.org/wiki/%E5%B0%BF#Japanese>).
> >
> > According to =E2=80=9CHawaiian Culture: Pidgin Phrases you Should Know=
=E2=80=9D (
> https://www.liveyouraloha.com/hawaiian-culture-pidgin-phrases-know/ <
> https://www.liveyouraloha.com/hawaiian-culture-pidgin-phrases-know/>) by
> Jodie Oaks, "I gotta go shishi!=E2=80=9D is a polite way to say =E2=80=9C=
that you have to
> go pee.=E2=80=9D The article also notes that children often use it; =E2=
=80=9Cshishi=E2=80=9D is a
> child=E2=80=99s word in Japanese (https://www.weblio.jp/content/%E3%81%97=
> <https://www.weblio.jp/content/%E3%81%97%E3%81%97> in Japanese).
> >
> > Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_loanwords_in_Hawaii <
> https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Japanese_loanwords_in_Hawaii>) also has
> =E2=80=9Cgo/make shishi=E2=80=9D. The word =E2=80=9Cmake=E2=80=9D would s=
eem to come from the Japanese suru
> (=E3=81=99=E3=82=8B), since shishi(o) suru is common. =E2=80=9CSuru=E2=80=
=9D is a dummy verb with thousands
> of uses; although my Mac Japanese-English dictionary does have =E2=80=9Cm=
ake=E2=80=9D as
> one of the meanings, it doesn=E2=80=99t seem to be a general way to trans=
> =E2=80=9Csuru=E2=80=9D. As purely idle speculation, I wonder if the =E2=
=80=9Cmake=E2=80=9D in =E2=80=9Cmake shishi=E2=80=9D
> comes by way of Portuguese or some other language.
> >
> > The Hawaiian Culture article and Wikipedia both talk about
> =E2=80=9Cfive-four-four" as a way to say =E2=80=9Cgo shishi=E2=80=9D in H=
awaiian English. The
> number =E2=80=9Cfive=E2=80=9D can be pronounced as =E2=80=9Cgo=E2=80=9D a=
nd =E2=80=9Cfour=E2=80=9D as =E2=80=9Cshi=E2=80=9D. That Wikipedia
> page calls it a Japanese kanji joke, but it comes from a systematic way o=
> pronouncing numbers to make mnemonics (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki
> /Japanese_wordplay#Numeric_substitution <https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki
> /Japanese_wordplay#Numeric_substitution>).
> >
> > 1. 2005
> > http://bit.ly/2AZUGVb <http://bit.ly/2AZUGVb>
> > Da Kine Dictionary: Da Hawai'i Community Pidgin Dictionary Projeck
> > by Lee A. Tonouchi
> >
> > cites a 1974 work by David Hiromoto, McKinley
> >
> > =E2=80=94=E2=80=94
> > shishi pee or the act of peeing. I drank too much beer so now I gotta g=
> shishi. See also 5 4 4, sheesh.
> > =E2=80=94=E2=80=94
> >
> > 2.. 2000
> > =E2=80=9CEncountering Sorrow=E2=80=9D in _The Quietest Singing_
> > By Darrell H. Y. Lum
> > Edited by Darrell H. Y. Lum, Joseph Stanton, Estelle Enoki
> >
> > =E2=80=94=E2=80=94
> > Or when Sakamoto like play wit us, his favorite team is Dicky Wee (we
> call him Pee Wee when he _go shishi_), Calvin Hee=E2=80=A6
> > =E2=80=94=E2=80=94
> >
> > 3. 17 May 2007
> > http://www.kiene.com/forums/showthread.php?11028-Tough%E9r-day <
> http://www.kiene.com/forums/showthread.php?11028-Tough%E9r-day>
> > by Otaru
> >
> > =E2=80=94=E2=80=94
> > I hope you went shishi on the man-o-war sting.
> > =E2=80=94=E2=80=94
> >
> > 3. 2008 (Google-dated)
> > https://books.google.ca/books?id=3DOwpKAQAAIAAJ&dq=3D%22go+shish
> i%22&focus=3Dsearchwithinvolume&q=3Dshishi <https://books.google.ca/books
> ?id=3DOwpKAQAAIAAJ&dq=3D%22go+shishi%22&focus=3Dsearchwithinvolume&q=3Dsh=
> > West's Hawaii reports: cases decided in the Supreme Court, Intermediate
> Court of Appeals, Volume 117
> >
> > =E2=80=94=E2=80=94
> > =E2=80=A6 [S]o extreme mental emotional distress is not about losing co=
ntrol in
> the sense that you might go shishi in your pants or that you might fall o=
> the floor because you can=E2=80=99t walk anymore.
> > =E2=80=94=E2=80=94
> >
> > 4. 5 November 2009
> > http://hemomi.blogspot.ca/2009/11/hohono.html <
> http://hemomi.blogspot.ca/2009/11/hohono.html>
> > by Llana
> >
> > =E2=80=94=E2=80=94
> > Or you know that strong mimi (urine) smell of a small child's shorts
> that have since dried up but you KNOW he went shishi and just won't admit
> it?
> > =E2=80=94=E2=80=94
> >
> > 5. Comment in response to a post on 8 August 2016
> > https://www.instagram.com/p/BI4NkrCgWED/ <https://www.instagram.com/p/B
> I4NkrCgWED/>
> > comment by kimmu1988
> >
> > =E2=80=94=E2=80=94
> > Went shishi part was so funny=F0=9F=98=82=F0=9F=98=82=F0=9F=98=82
> > =E2=80=94=E2=80=94
> >
> >

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