Madonna and Eve

Photo by Trisha Thomas

According an Italian, whose name is preferable for an exclamation, Madonna or Eve’s?

My adolescent daughters have adopted an Italian teenage expression. They pepper their conversations with the exclamation: “‘Maaaa – ddonnnnn– aaaa”. That would be “Madonna”. My Italian, and Catholic husband, Gustavo, does not like this one bit and every time he hears it he forbids them to say it again. Not much luck there. When my husband gets really mad – like when one of the kids threw up on his computer bag on a long car trip going on a family vacation– his favorite exclamation is “Puttana Eva!”, translated – “That Whore Eve”. So, I guess Saints are untouchable (for the tongue) and sinners are fair game. Poor Eve. It was just an apple. Maaaa –  ddoonnn — aaaa!

 

 

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Post in: Italiano

Trisha Thomas
Trisha is a TV journalist working for AP TV News in Rome. She is married to an Italian and is a Mamma of three.

10 Comments

  1. Erica
    2011/09/17

    I am pretty ambivalent as I’ve heard the gambit- porca .., porco …, porca …. No one is untouchable…. ;)

    Reply
    • Trisha Thomas
      Trisha Thomas
      2011/09/18

      Erica — Thanks for the reply– I edited out the three words and just put in dots because I was afraid of offending some Italian readers. But you are totally right, I have heard them all too, and I agree, with you, if you listen to people let loose in anger it seems that no one is untouchable. One expression that you did not mention which has always sort of amused me is “PORCA MISERIA”. What exactly does that mean? Miserable pig? Whatever it means, it cracks me up when I hear it.

      Reply
  2. Gwen Thomas
    2011/09/17

    So litle girls do the Maaadoonnnnaaaa with the big eyeball roll driving their dad crazy. Do boys have the same expression or a different one?

    Reply
    • Trisha Thomas
      Trisha Thomas
      2011/09/18

      Nico — who is 16 – definitely does NOT use the expression “madonna”. I have a feeling his exclamations/expletives are more vulgar but he is wise enough never to use them in front of his parents. Smart kid.

      Reply
  3. Alan
    2011/09/17

    ‘Masallah! Masallah!’

    Reply
    • Trisha Thomas
      Trisha Thomas
      2011/09/18

      I love it!! Masallah! Masallah! I will teach my daughters that one! Thank you!

      Reply
  4. Rick
    2011/09/18

    Don’t little (and grown up ones, so I’ve been told over & over again by women) boys always talk about and refer to their “southern region”?

    Reply
    • Trisha Thomas
      Trisha Thomas
      2011/09/18

      Hey Rick, I think I know what you are talking about. A lot of Italian teenage boys (and yes sometimes husbands and cameramen) respond to requests from their mammas/wives/producers by saying “che palle!” Which is roughly equivalent to the American “what a ball-breaker”.
      My favorite exclamation is, of course, the non-vulgar “Mamma Mia”!!

      Reply
  5. iVicio
    2011/09/18

    Im Italian and i used to say Madonna for many things.
    Like when you see something strange: Madonna cos’è? Madonna what is it?
    But Puttana Eva is not a nice word, even in Italy. :)

    Reply
    • Trisha Thomas
      Trisha Thomas
      2011/09/18

      Thank you for your comment. Since you are an Italian, maybe you can help in this discussion. What is the best thing to say when one is angry in Italian without being vulgar? Would it be “Porca Miseria?” And how exactly would you translate that into English? “Miserable pig”
      Let me know. Thanks, Trisha

      Reply

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