Sunday, September 23, 2012

The Unmentionable Pig

One of the stranger aspects of Israel's ultra-Orthodox, "Chareidi" press, is their determination not to use the word "pig."

Last night, 2 Israelis were killed when their car smashed into a wild boar on Highway 5, East of Tapuach Junction.  Here is how the Chareidi newspaper, HaModia reported it:

HaModia Newspaper reports on the unmentionable wild boar.

"In a head on collision last night, in which 2 "wild other things" ran into the road, 2 men in their 40's were killed.

The accident took place in the area between Tapuach and Migdalim in the Shomron.  Magen David Adom's (Israel's emergency medical and rescue service) attempts failed to save the wounded, and doctors pronounced the men dead on the scene.  MDA reported that next to the car were 2 dead "wild other things" and it is assumed they caused the fatal accident."

It's a bit ridiculous that HaModia can't even use the word, "pig" (or wild boar).


Had this not been such a tragic story of 2 people being killed, I would have added a picture from Maurice Sendak's book, "Where the Wild Things Are."

May their memories be blessed. 


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10 comments:

Adamchik said...

A standard phrase from the gemara for something you don't want to mention - dovar achar. Nice to see their studies are so much a part of their lives.

Jameel @ The Muqata said...

Some Chareidim might think that the car hit Elisha ben Abuyah.

(Also know in the Gemara as "the other one")

rrw said...

or voldermort

Yosef Greenberg said...

I think the reason is more benign.

There are other connotations in the chareidi vernacular that the word "chazir" connotes. They don't want confusion or worse. This is actually (for them) the best way to accurately convey the story.

ProfK said...

Particularly strange because Yiddish has many standard usages of "chazer" that are part of everyday speech, a few of which do refer to the actual animal. Something that is without a doubt treif is "chazer treif." If someone takes more than is necessary or polite, that person is acting like a "chazer." "Piggish" eating habits are "chazerish." Just what was accomplished by talking around the fact that pigs/boars were involved in the accident, other than confusion for many reading the report?

Reb Chaim HaQoton said...

What was the point of this post?

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Jameel @ The Muqata said...

RCQ: You didn't find the language of HaModia rather bizarre?

Anonymous said...

I thought it ridiculed the entire story. Two people died. If it was that important not to mention they were wild boars, they could have just written "wild animals". At least it wouldn't cause people to laugh when they read it.

mmatitya said...

Yosef Greenberg: There are other connotations in the chareidi vernacular that the word "chazir" connotes. They don't want confusion or worse.

Umm... there are other things that "davar acher" means too, you know...

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