Lots of Irish words and sayings have spread to America and the rest of the world. The ‘craic’ relating to having a good time is an obvious example, banjaxed meaning broken or tired is another…or perhaps gombeen, meaning a somewhat shady character.
And then there is boycott meaning to shun, going back to the times of Irish tenants being evicted from their land by greedy landlords.
But so far, the word ‘eejit’ hasn’t found widespread approval. Maybe because it’s basically the word ‘idiot’ which the rest of the world already has, but the thing is…idiot doesn’t really carry the same weight and scorn as ‘eejit.’
US Congressman Brendan Boyle wants to change that and let Americans know what they’ve been missing all these years. On his Twitter account he announced that he wanted to introduce the word into the United States. No doubt with his tongue firmly in his cheek, he said: “I’m on a mission to make the word eejit widely used in America.
“Few people who follow me will understand what I’m talking about. But those who do will surely appreciate it! (I wish I had a dollar for every time I heard “Brendan, don’t be the eejit” while growing up).”
Brendan, those of us in Ireland, & from your father's native Donegal, in particular, salute you for your mission to make the word eejit widely used in America. My own mother, who was raised in Ardara, often refers to @realDonaldTrump as an eejit when he pops up on TV!— Patrick Gibbons (@topined) 13 February 2019
Well, we can see his point, most people in Ireland would be comfortably off if they had a dollar for every time they’d been called an ‘eejit’ by their parents.
Brendan’s father came from Donegal and he is proud of his Irish heritage. Brendan and his brother Kevin are both congressman and paid tribute to their father after being sworn in. On his Twitter account he wrote: he wrote: “Dad immigrated to America when he was 19. Spent the next 50 years working in a warehouse and as a custodian. This week he attended the swearing-in ceremonies of both of his sons.
“Both Rep Kevin Boyle and I know we wouldn’t be where we are without his hard work and sacrifice.”
Dad immigrated to America when he was 19. Spent the next 50 years working in a warehouse and as a custodian. This week he attended the swearing-in ceremonies of both of his sons. Both @RepKevinBoyle and I know we wouldn’t be where we are without his hard work & sacrifice. pic.twitter.com/7yXRkBjaFH— US Rep Brendan Boyle (@RepBrendanBoyle) 4 January 2019
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