I miss Ireland with a fiery ache in my chest. Maybe itâ€™s the acid reflux from drinking 40 bottles of wine in my friendâ€™s camper last night â€“ who really knows? But since everyone and their dog is going to Ireland this summer, Iâ€™ve been thinking about it a lot. I miss it.
1. Whatâ€™s the craic?
Craic, pronounced like â€œcrackâ€, is the Irish word used to describe the countryâ€™s spirit. Itâ€™s a positive thing. â€œWhatâ€™s the craic?â€ is pretty much â€œwhatâ€™s up?â€ â€œHeâ€™s great craicâ€ or â€œthatâ€™s the craicâ€ means something was wonderful, pleasing, delightful.
My favourite: â€œLetâ€™s knock a little craic out of it tonight.â€
2. Your man
â€œYour man over thereâ€ confused the hell out of me whenever my friend David from Sligo used it. I don’t have a man. Weâ€™d be sitting around having a pint of Guinness at a pub and then someone would say, â€œYour man over there is drunk.â€ If I had a man, he probably WOULD be drunk.
I’ve also heard it used to describe a woman, although the more common expression is “your one” (which sounds more like “wan”).
3. Iâ€™m grand, sure
We use this one commonly in Newfoundland as well. â€œIâ€™m grand, sureâ€ means everything is fab and wonderful and life is happy fun. The â€œsureâ€ is just there for fun.
4. Did you give her the shift?
A â€œshiftâ€ in Ireland means a French kiss. When a friend asked me â€œDid he give you the shift?â€ I was appalled heâ€™d be so forward. I figured it meant something more sexual. But nope, it turns out a cheeky shift with an Irishman is actually a lot of fun.
5. Go way outta it
This is another common expression in Newfoundland, usually meant to convey either disbelief or frustration. Yeah, those are two completely opposite things, I realize.
â€œAre you going to the pub for a pint?â€ â€œNah, I quit drinking.â€ â€œGo way outta it, you loves da Guinness!â€
6. Acting the maggot
Meaning somethingâ€™s being disagreeable, upsetting. If someoneâ€™s acting the maggot, theyâ€™re being a jerk. â€œJonnyâ€™s acting the maggot again.â€