Jun 17, 2010

The Not-So-Evil Eye

A couple of days ago, I was watching the Yankee game with Gia and her father. More accurately, we were watching the Yankee pre-game show on the YES Network. We were in the middle of some conversation when John Flaherty, former MLB catcher and current YES Network on-air personality, popped up on the screen. This guy:

John Flaherty is the guy on the right.
I mentioned how it looks like Flaherty has had some work done.  Something around the eyes or maybe just a chemical peel or something.  He was real, real shiny that day.  Like he was freshly scrubbed with a pumice stone.

Then this conversation took place:

Gia: "Oh shit!  Looks like he's got the Heene."
Me: "What?  Like he's got the what?"
Gia: "The Heenies.  The fucked-up eyes!  Look at him!"
Her Dad: "Yeah...definitely da Heenie Goblatz on dat guy."
Me: "....."
Them: laughing

I have no idea what the fuck they were talking about.  Gia and her family have a mix of Spanish, German, Italian and Irish in 'em, so I figured it was an ethnic thing.  Sounded Yiddish to me, actually.  And who knows where people pick shit up.

Now I didn't want to seem ill-informed or ignorant, so I just let the comment slide.  I had no idea what the Heenie Goblatz was.  I was guessing it was the Evil Eye or something.  A curse or just a fucked-up way of saying someone has fucked-up eyes.  What do I know?  I'm third-generation Irish from both sides of my family.  We didn't have the Evil Eye.  Except for that look that my grandmother used to give me sometimes.  ::shivers::

Anyway, like I do, I couldn't let this one slip away.  So I had to look it up on the Web.  Nope...nothing on the Heenie Goblatz.  Then again, I could have been spelling it wrong.  Coblatz, Koblatz, Heene, Heeny....nope...nothing.

So I looked up the Evil Eye instead.  Maybe work backwards.  Found lots of good stuff too. Lots of different words and expressions for it in lots of different languages. Just nothing in any language that could possibly be pronounced like the way they were pronouncing it.

So I finally gave up and asked Gia about it. She immediately started laughing, explaining that the Heene family (pronounced he-knee) were neighbors when she was growing up and they all had fucked-up eyes. Hence the Heenies. The last part was just a nonsense add-on that her father made up. And there you have it.

The Heenie Goblatz.

Sometimes it's better to just ask right away rather than wasting a night on Wikipedia and the like.

Note: Remember to play the Badgerdaddy Trivia Challenge every day. Dat guy does have the Heenies!


RW said...

That's some Farco Barnes chit right there.

Verdant Earl said...

RW - exactly.

Slyde said...

If you ever want some Italian in YOU, just let me know....

Verdant Earl said...

Diapositiva - La salsiccia poco? No, grazie.

i am the diva said...

any relation to the crazy Heene family who faked their Balloon Boy to get media buzz for a reality tv show?

Verdant Earl said...

Diva - When I was looking it up, those jackasses were the main culprits showing up in my searches. No...no relation. I think.

Heff said...

Google won't answer EVERYTHING, will it ?

sybil law said...

But the balloon Heene's had some screwy eyes, too!!!

Verdant Earl said...

Heff - Some day...when it becomes aware. Like SkyNet.

Sybil - Did they? All I remember of them is the kid puking on live TV. Hehehe.

That Hank said...

We grew up calling peanut butter on saltines "Ferger snacks". When I call it that now, people assume it's a regionalism. In reality, my mom grew up next to a very poor family named the Fergers, and that was what they would have as an after school snack. Hence, Ferger snacks.

Verdant Earl said...

Hank - That's awesome. We have something similar with a family named Datz. :)

Bruce Johnson said...

Today is a good day....I learned a new insult....