Indonesian: When English Falls Short – Part 2 | “She Peanuted Me!”

Has someone ever peanuted you? Oh! Well how was that then? Better than being casualed I should think. Ever had that happen? Ever gone style dead in the middle of a business meeting? Sorry, I should have started with: Loe pernah punya pengalaman mampir di Indonesia ga?  

If you understand a little gaul, chances are you can go ahead and circle ‘all of the above‘ (with a water-soluble felt-tip pen or marker). 

For the [bonus!] of context, let’s just say Indonesia is home to some pretty remorseless tricksters. Given that prior to Islam many tribes were strongly matriarchal, I’m talking some seriously tricky women too. Add to this little character sketch of mine a defensive pride of national independence newly reclaimed from a queue of colonialists and you have a people whose love for freedom is expressed – even to their detriment.

Anwar Congo (left) is just one Famous National Trickster.

Famous National Tricksters: Anwar Congo (on the left)


And now back to… Peanut as a verb in the passive voice (dikacangi) is similar to getting blown off, subordinated, deprioritized, marginalized…except – dear people – we’re talking PEANUT AS A VERB. And what’s it like to be casualed by someone (dicuekin) then? Well, that too is a bit like being stabbed in the gut. One might compare it to being ‘friend-zoned’ and one hopes that’s partially correct. And if these two things happen to you on the same night on Jalan Legian when the person you’re with takes off with a bunch of Irish drunks, reminded of their ex (hypothetically of course) “Mati gaya lho!” you might exclaim. Having made a two-hour speech without any prep, had a one-hour taxi ride go up to 16, or caught the bronze-skinned cold-shoulder, well you might be clinically style dead. “Style-dead dude!” you might exclaim. And for whatever reason, people here will find this a comical admission. 


Listening to people speak – rather than hearing what they have to say – might tell you what kind of hell they are coming from and what kind of coping mechanisms they have crafted. Faced with their own tragi-comedy, Indonesians know how to put all of their miseries into these linguistic nutshells, opening a corridor of humour and feigning a laugh at it all with their congregation of Tweeps – peanuting the peanutters, if you will.


I’d like to know, are there any English expressions that can be used to similar effect (or should we humour ourselves with the ambiguity of the phrasal verb ‘to blow someone off’ alone)?





One thought on “Indonesian: When English Falls Short – Part 2 | “She Peanuted Me!”

  1. Pingback: Indonesian: When English Falls Short – Part 4 | “Assed & Armpitted” | IGNEOUS BOMB IGNEOUS

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