Posted by ESC on June 22, 2003
In Reply to: Shlemiel shlimazl posted by ESC on June 22, 2003
: : Laverne and Shirley used to open their comedy series with, "Shlemeil, Shemozzl ..." What does it mean?
: I can help with the first two words of that bit:
: From "The Joys of Yiddish" by Leo Rosten (Pocket Books, New York, 1996):
: shlemiel, schlemiel, shlemiehl, shlemihl - carries a distinctive note of pity. In fact, a shlemiel is often the nebech's (sad sack, loser, nothing) twin brother. The classic definition goes: A shlemiel is always knocking things off a table; the nebech always picks them up.
: shlimazl, shlimazel - chronically unlucky person; someone for whom nothing seems to go right or turn out well.
: I imagine the rest is a children's song. Are they playing hopscotch when they sing it? I don't remember.
From another site:
"How about that old Laverne and Shirley theme song? You know..."Shlemiel, shlimazl, hasenpfeffer incorporated..." A Shlemiel is someone who is clumsey or a chronic screwup. A Shlimazl is someone who is chronically unlucky. So a Shlemiel spills the beer on the Shlimazl. (Incidently, hasepfeffer is peppered rabbit stew. Go figure.)" http://bakingmynoodle.blogspot.com/2002_12_08_archiveindex.html