Sunday, December 19, 2010


You all know the French expression "je m'en fous", meaning "I don't care", "I don't give a ...." Well, I was reminded today that the Italian equivalent, "me ne frego" has led to a beautiful coinage: "un menefregista" to describe anyone who is constantly shrugging his shoulders and letting you know that he doesn't give a .....

Even better was the word I learned when I was in Milan to describe the kind of person who dashes from bar to bar, gulping down a coffee and apologising the he can't stay long because he's "got things to do", in Italian, "ha da fare". He isn't really busy, but he likes to give the impression that he is a busy and important man. He is, in a word, "un daffarista".

The above note is gender-neutral, ie, man stands for man or woman, he stands for he or she, etc. If anyone is upset by this linguistic convention, well, to tell you frankly, sono un menefregista.

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