Wednesday, June 3, 2009

A scholarly exposition of le palle

My recent learned treatise on cazzo has aroused (no pun intended) a certain amount of interest. So I feel that a sequel dedicated to the closely connected (literally) palle is in order.

Le palle are Those Things in the male anatomy located in the near vicinity of That. OK?

Their being smaller and less conspicuous than That is reflected in their more modest linguistic role in Italian, where they express irritation, boredom and insignificance rather than anger and rage.

Let us examine some uses.

Che palle. What a bore.
Non rompere le palle. Don't break my balls/get on my nerves.
Non dire palle. Don't talk shit.
Mi sta sulle palle. Can't stand him.
Ho le palle piene. I'm fed up.
Che prof palloso. What a boring teacher.
Rossi e' uno senza palle. Rossi is a wimp.
Fuori dalle palle. Get the hell out/leave me the hell alone.

As with cazzo, there is a deplorable tendency on the part of some prissy-pants to be half-assed and employ euphemisms. The chief among these is the word balle. Another is scatole, despite the obvious fact that the Things in question are not cubical. Perhaps their direct experience of such matters is limited. These persons will also abbreviate the exhortation to avoid irritating the speaker to a mere "non rompere" or "basta rompere," where the object of potential breakage is only implied.

If an escalation is in order (as is so often the case in Italy, and, now that I think of it, in America, too), you should make yourself clear by promptly substituting i coglioni.

Hai rotto i coglioni! I am very cross with you.

And that brings this post to a close, perche' mi sto gia' rompendo le palle da sola.