Saturday, 25 October 2014

Cocksure

We sometimes get 'foreigners' leaving blog post comments here, that they don't understand our peculiar use of the English language - or even getting thrown (confused) buy* just single words that have ambiguous meaning. Google Translate probably has a lot to answer for (is to blame for international miscommunication). Now I have a foreign wife and I'm teaching my young kids to read and write, I'm even more aware of the bizarre irregularities in the English language. The use/meaning of words changes with time and cultural/social climate too. When I was at school the word 'spunk' meant bravado - I can remember our Latin teacher using it. Today it means something else and Latin is no longer taught in schools (is there a connection there?).
Today's word in question is 'cocksure'. I'm not sure of its origin - male fighting chickens? My Collins Gem English Dictionary (printed in 2004) lists it as: '(adjective) overconfident, arrogant'. To me there has to me some male swagger in there - I wouldn't say overconfident, but definitely large balls (testicles) clanging - like Marco Melandri here.... BP *UPDATE:
Beste Adriaan,

I really didn't get your 'buy, bye, or by?' comment, and was too busy to scratch my head over it for any length of time. Now my editor has pointed out more specifically that it was a typo. Like my Dutch wife, you are evidently better at spelling English than me. BP

7 comments:

tonyand03 said...

You just don't see that any more. Damn traction control.

Adriaan said...

Is that thrown buy, bye, or by? Groeten uit Haarlem. 😉

footlooselizzy said...

the "cock " feather is the feather on the outside of an arrow if you get a "cock up' it means that the arrow has been fitted to the bow the wrong way around , a feather will hit the bow and send the arrow off target.
maybe being "cock sure " is knowing that you are set up and on target?
oily rob

Diedre Greenshields said...

Smoke 'em if You Got 'em

Adam Bauer said...

May be one of the coolest powerslides ever done on two wheels on pavement... Yep, that's pretty rad.

Hairy Larry said...

"Cocksure" is the feeling a mechanic gets when he opens his drawers (the ones in his tool chest...)and sees that his King Dick...(wrenches, wrenches you naughty boys in the back row...) are all in order and ready are ready for work...

Kirk said...

my money is on cockfighting which was apparently your national sport for a while- to pit one against another is another good one. Meanwhile the Italians are power sliding and making Ducatis like the a couple of posts after this one- good on 'em the cocky bastards.