Happy International Women’s Day! On the news just now, statistics on equality between men and women in Europe and the Netherlands comes disappointingly low in the list. One important factor in that low score is the fact that there has never been a female prime minister here. There have been such great examples of female leaders in countries like New Zealand and Finland – what are we waiting for?!
I don’t suppose that last question will make much difference, so back to words. I’m in the middle of translating a long annual report for a waste processing company, and it’s more interesting than you might think. But I got stuck on the Dutch word ‘verslakking’. I had an idea of what it was but I needed the right word. With a bit of help from colleagues, I translated it as ‘slag/slagging’. Not without a snigger or two. Because slagging off means putting someone down, speaking badly of them or making fun of them. And slag is another word for slut, meaning a woman who isn’t particularly houseproud (that’s me, an absolute slut!) or has many sexual partners (damn, too busy not cleaning my house). I actually also knew the word from ‘slag heap’ which is the hill near a coal mine that’s formed by mining waste. Which brings us neatly back to waste and I have to get back to work!