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When abroad, speak as locals speak, recommends an old expats' mantra on assimilation
Thanks to John Carr and Paul Anastasi's "Your Eyes Fourteen - The Mad Greek Dictionary", the time-consuming task of mastering colloquial Greek is no longer an arduous trip to "the devil's mother that will get the olive oil out of you".
The authors discuss each saying's origins in terms of national history and psychology. Familiarise yourself "knife to the bone" with hundreds of the most frequent and colourful expressions Greeks use in everyday conversation - and show that you too can "catch a flea in midflight".
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Mastering Greek is no longer an trip to "the devil's mother that will get the olive oil out of you".
-- Greek News Agenda, 20 April 2007
Some of these expressions may seem crude to the genteel eye and ear, even verboten in a politically correct sense. But the Greeks have never been, and never will be, Puritan Protestants. In their vernacular the risqué and divine often intermingle with startling results.
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