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July 19, 2006

Elections ev'ly night

If you've ever thought about getting a penile implant in Turkey, you might want to check your neighbor's garage door opener first.

In an article in the Register with the juvenile sub-head "Hard luck for implant chap," we are told that a "chap" has complained that he has an erection whenever his neighbor uses the garage door remote. This is an alleged transcript of an alleged phone call to a radio show. File it under "probably bogus but nevertheless strangely amusing."

CALLER: I had a problem with impotence and I had an operation in Turkey and got an implant which would help.
HOST: I know the sort of thing.
CALLER: But what is happening now is every time my neighbour comes back in their 4 x 4, I get an erection.
HOST: Good Lord.
CALLER: This is embarrassing. It's a big problem.
HOST: Have you been to see your doctor about it?
CALLER: The problem is I had this done in Turkey, using equipment that is not known in this country. I don't like it because every time his car pulls in I can't leave the house.
HOST: (Laughing) I'm afraid that it sounds funny as well. I know it's not funny for you.
CALLER: It's not funny for me, Roger, when I can't leave the house because I'm walking around with a big erection.
HOST: You're going to have to go and see a doctor.
(via Fark) What I'd like to know is whether you can replicate this with different radio frequencies -- say, the frequencies used by your TV remote, your I-Pod remote, or for that matter, the remote for your Sleep NumberTM bed. Because, well, you know, it would be so, uh, empowering for the woman in your life if she could call upon you by pressing the button on a remote.

Plus a certain notorious judge might not have been in so much trouble if he had used a remote control device.

On a more serious note, I've been listening to the CD version of Michael Wex's book Born to Kvetch, an amusing socio-religio-linguistic (that's my invention) look at the Yiddish language. When discussing Yiddish terminology for the male member (the obvious ones being schmuck and putz), Wex notes an interesting additional term -- choyl ha-moyed. This is a yiddishized version of the Hebrew term for the days in the middle of the eight-day festivals of Passover and Sukkot on which work is not prohibited. Wex says that the term comes from a Slavic word that sounds like it -- I didn't catch the exact word (remember I'm listening, not reading) -- that means, roughly, "exposed testicles." He adds that the term fit nicely in Yiddish because of a play on words. Regel not only refers to one of the three pilgrimage festivals (Passover, Shavuot, and Sukkot) but also means leg. So choyl ha-moyed means the days between a regel (festival day on which work is prohibited) and a regel but also means what's between a regel (leg) and a regel (leg).

[Note (7/20): Minor edits in final paragraph.]