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Your Favorite Euphemisms


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I was reminded of this term in a previous thread, and I thought it would be nice to talk about. Also, I'm especially curious if there are any interesting euphemisms outside the English language.

For those unfamiliar, euphemisms are pleasant words used to describe harsh situations, entities, or events.

I can't come up with one in my native language as of now, but as for ones in English, one of my favorites has always been "homely" to describe someone who is considered to be unattractive. There's also terms like "Passed away" or "Passed on" or even "departed" to describe someone who has died. And of course, who can forget "passing gas" to describe farting?  :wacky:

Which are your favorite euphemisms?

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Yes, "passed way" is a very common one: it seems that death is a tabu word so we do everything to avoid saying it. "He's not with us any more", or "She's left us" are just two more examples of the many euphemisms for dying. In the Salvation Army they use the wonderful phrase "She's been promoted to glory"!

Bodily functions are also a bit tabu. Farting can be described as "breaking wind", and of course you do all this in a "rest-room". In Britain we "spend a penny" when we use these facilities.  :shy:

I love the euphemism we have in GB "a man is helping police with their enquiries", when what they really mean is that a suspect is being interrogated by the police and is suspected of a crime.

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I don't know if this would do: "Do" as euphemistic term for sex.

But these others I'm sure about:

The "b" word - Used to avoid saying the disparaging "b" word used in reference to women.

Adult movie - used when wants to avoid saying a movie has porn content in it.

Mentally challenged - you won't get away with calling someone a retard. Not very polite is it?

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Hmm.....Let's see......

"I am letting you go" instead of "You are fired".

"I am not fat! I am big-boned!"

"Swing the other way round" instead of "Homosexual"

"Between jobs" instead of "Unemployed"

I think there's a lot more of these in chinese but I can't seem to think of any right now :(

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Hmm.....Let's see......

"I am letting you go" instead of "You are fired".

"I am not fat! I am big-boned!"

"Swing the other way round" instead of "Homosexual"

"Between jobs" instead of "Unemployed"

I think there's a lot more of these in chinese but I can't seem to think of any right now :(

These are all great. I was going to mention "laid off" instead of fired. It definitely doesn't make it any easier to hear! People often say "upset stomach" or "indigestion" instead of "diarrhea", although I don't blame them.

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After "being short" got turned into "vertically challenged" another quickly followed: now you're not "bald", just "folically challenged". :laugh:

In Spanish they call someone with low social skills "special". They're not a special person at all, just sometimes downright unpleasant.

Have you noticed how many euphemisms are used by politicians to express when they want to cut public spending? Instead of saying the unpopular word cuts, they say, "adjustments", "fiscal consolidation", "fiscal responsibility" and a long list of others.

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I have heard scince i was little " yeah that would go well like a fart in church"- in reference to saying that something is a bad idea

"peer homework help"- to say that someone is cheating

"white lie" or "fudge" - to describe lying

"in the family way" - to say someone is pregnant lol

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Hmm.....Let's see......

"I am letting you go" instead of "You are fired".

"I am not fat! I am big-boned!"

"Swing the other way round" instead of "Homosexual"

"Between jobs" instead of "Unemployed"

I think there's a lot more of these in chinese but I can't seem to think of any right now :(

Very good examples, thanks! I honestly don't hear the big boned one very much, though. I don't know how it is in other countries, but here, the most common one used to pertain to fat people is to call them "healthy", which now that I think about it is kind of ironic.

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