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November 17, 2008

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The words Kacke (n) and kacken (v) in German -- our linguistic cousin, of course -- refer to excrement. Something that's gekackt is, in the literal sense, shat upon, and in the metaphoric sense is fubar. Sounds like Quinlon, who's usually right anyway :-), probably has nailed it.

Note that weasels ate my apostrophes. Just sayin.

Thanks for the Deutsch, Mike. And be it noted that I have filed a Missing Apostrophe Report with TypePad, which promised to remedy the problem, but di-int.

I don't think "cack-handed" is particularly common in the UK, the Economist notwithstanding. Some left-handed people don't like the word at all. Cack-handed is one of the words mentioned in my blog post "88 ways of saying left-handed" here:
http://virtuallinguist.typepad.com/the_virtual_linguist/2008/09/eight-eight-ways-of-saying-left-handed.html

@Virtual Linguist: That's an excellent post! Thanks for the link.

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