Thursday, August 12, 2004

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Reflections on 'tchotchke'

Good grief. I’ve just discovered that my favorite word, tchotchke, or chachka, which I’ve always understood to mean “a cheap showy trinket,” can also refer to “a mistress.” The irony is that I’ve long been using this as a term of abuse for individuals, male or female, of dubious moral virtue, if you catch my drift. In fact, there’s no drift. This term of abuse has come to encompass, over time, any and all individuals engaging in practices I find irksome, including, for example,

(a) not surrendering large caches of diamonds, amethysts, or rubies to me voluntarily, thus causing headaches down the road when I am obligated to forcibly “nationalize” said resources on behalf of sovereign Brooklyn, of which I am the sole freebooting representative, and fashion them into elaborate necklaces with which to lasso my pampered, perfumed albino camels;

(b) not serving me selflessly, and indeed blindly and unethically, in ferocious armed combat against my broken-Snapple-bottle-wielding, chain-rattling, sharpened-denture-wearing, non-functional-“stylish”-diaper-sporting, Cocteau Twins-mimicking, synchronized-swimming, Harper’s-reading, “Thugz Mansion”-inhabiting, Treo-toting enemies;

(c) littering.

I have coined a number of variations on tchotchke/chachka, including my favorite, “tchotchmika,” as in, “You little tchotchmika,” or, better yet, “You venomous, villainous tchotchmika—I will roll you up in a turnip leaf, set you ablaze, and smoke your remains! And I’ll do it again!”

I’ve even written a song about it:

What’s up, tcotchmika? What this look like, a stick up? I’m sick o’ Your nonsense, events Have caused me to spend time In convents I’m down with the nunnery Admire the fashion sense, never rock a pocket T Or stick a fork in a socket, bee Bzzzzzzzz! People like to eat honey Golden Grahams without it Just wouldn’t be the same, see? I prefer Mini-Wheats, and feet in cleats They make sliding home easy That’s it, I’m out The weather’s quite breezy

Please use the words "tchotchke," "chachka," and "tchotchmika" as often as you can. Indeed, I think "tchotchmika" would make a lovely term of endearment. "Oh, my darling tchotchmika ..." This is all idle speculation, of course. So yes, spread it far and wide!

posted by Suzanne Nossel on 08.12.04 at 05:41 PM


And this dear readers is an example of a wandering and pointless post with entertaining undertones that make it, on the whole, worth the read...I haven't a clue what it means.

posted by: j swift on 08.12.04 at 05:41 PM [permalink]

When will you Brooklynites stop deluding yourselves and just admit that you're a part of Long Island?

posted by: Independent George on 08.12.04 at 05:41 PM [permalink]

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