1. spklvr
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    spklvr Contributing Member Contributor

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    A word or expression for this?

    Discussion in 'Word Mechanics' started by spklvr, Jun 21, 2011.

    In Norway, people can be company sick (directly translated), basically meaning they want company real bad. I tried to use lonely, but it's not really the same thing. Company sick is more: "I'm bored, talk to me!" than lonely. So just wondering if there is a word or expression for this.

    And while we're at it, is there an expression meaning the same as "the lazy carries themselves to death", which I think sound kind of stupid in English (though I'm under the impression that even in Norway, that's a pretty local saying).
     
  2. cruciFICTION
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    cruciFICTION Contributing Member Contributor

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    Forlorn, perhaps? Forlorn is "pitifully sad, desperate, or lonely".

    As for the second part, that does sound kind of weird. I think I know what you're getting at, but I can't help with that. Sorry.
     
  3. darkhaloangel
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    darkhaloangel Active Member

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    1. Attention seeking.

    2.The lazy carry themselves to death.

    I don't think number 2 sounds wierd at all - it's an interesting phrase (just needs a different conjugation of the verb) In english however we may say:

    2.Bone idle.

    But it is a little different as 'bone idle' is a state of being; also 'lazy bones'
     
  4. cruciFICTION
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    cruciFICTION Contributing Member Contributor

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    Attention-seeking is very different to what the OP was talking about, I think. It has negative connotations. I think that the OP was talking about something more innocent and pure, I guess?

    I have to second "bone idle", though. Now I understand the "lazy carry themselves to death" thing (I hope).
     
  5. madhoca
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    madhoca Contributing Member Contributor

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    If you want company very much, you can say you are 'desperately lonely', 'starved of conversation', 'crave human contact' or are 'dying to see someone'. Personally, I don't know of another simple English word or phrase which carries the meaning you indicate, but the idiom for this varies, doesn't it, according to a writer's regional background, style and register? It depends how serious your need is, as well.
    Again, a standard English phrase for your second idea doesn't come to me at the moment. We can attempt to express it in ways like: 'He was a candidate for a premature coronary--his life passed in eating, beer-swilling and inactivity' but it's hard to convey that just laziness alone brings death!
     
  6. JimFlagg
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    JimFlagg Contributing Member

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    If they are not lonely and just want company then we say "attention starved" or "they want to be the center of attention".

    We use a term that is the opposite of this, "A rolling stone will gather no moss." It basically means that if you do not sit idle then there is no way for you to rot away.

    This is what we call "lost in translation."
     
  7. spklvr
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    spklvr Contributing Member Contributor

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    I think "starved of conversation" might be what's closest.
    Also, that's not what that expression means :p

    It means that a lazy person would do a lot of hard work to avoid doing something they are too lazy to do. For example, carrying a large and heavy load rather than going twice. Or just work hard on making up excuses for why you can't do something you're supposed to, like work. Often it would have been easier just to do it in the first place.

    Edit: When I think about it, I think the full expression is "The lazy would rather carry themselves to death than go twice" ... or something. It's hard to translate it properly. The go twice bit doesn't sound right.
     
  8. spklvr
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    spklvr Contributing Member Contributor

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    Okay, that is actually pretty good. I can use that. Thank you :)
     
  9. Leonardo Pisano
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    Leonardo Pisano Active Member

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    "the lazy carries themselves to death"
    Jim's rolling stone expression is a nice "translation". I think in old greek it was "panta rei". In Dutch they say something like "(only) dead corpses float downstream".
     
  10. madhoca
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    madhoca Contributing Member Contributor

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    I don't understand what the rolling stone saying has to do with your idea. It means that someone who moves from place to place has no emotional ties or possessions. You describe something that doesn't have an equivalent in English at all IMO. Most languages have untranslatable sayings or concepts.
     
  11. Word Dancer
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    You might want to consider using the phrase and then explaining it briefly if you need to use it often enough in what you are writing.
     
  12. JayTokes
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    JayTokes Member

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    spklvr, might I ask what the original Norwegian word for company sick is?
     
  13. spklvr
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    spklvr Contributing Member Contributor

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    Selskapssjuk (Selskap = company ((but not in the business kind of way)), sjuk/syk ((accent)) = sick)
     

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