Please be warned – this post is probably not safe for work.
I write books about gangsters and other assorted ne’er do wells, and they swear – a lot. They swear in multiple languages, too, which is admittedly one of the most fun research tasks I perform on behalf of the Alexi Sokolsky series of novels. This handy glossary will help you decode the various curses, insults, exclamations and interjections used by Alexi and the other characters in Blood Hound and Stained Glass.
Bozhe moy/Bozhe mir
Probably the mildest curse in this list. Kind of like ‘Oh God’ or ‘God damn’. Safe to say around Grandma.
A strong term for the female genitalia. Also kind of synonymous with ‘whore’. Can be used to describe either a situation (‘this shit is pizdets’) or a person (you pussy!).
“Something bad is happening.” Literally means ‘cunt to steering wheel’. Try driving down the freeway using your crotch, and you’ll understand.
‘Bitch.’ If you play any online FPS, you’re probably familiar with this one.
Khuy (pronounced ‘hooie’, but with more phlegm on the ‘h’)
Dick, cock, wang. Khuy is one of the main roots of whole world of Russian swearing. Khuy & Pizda make Mat’ go round.
In addition, khuy is probably one of the most flexible words in Russian and Ukrainian slang, used as an affix for all sorts of things. It is also considered extremely rude, far more offensive than ‘dick’ is in English. You know how some people use ‘fuckin’ like an adjective? Yeah.
Behold, a few choice examples of the wonder that is khuy:
Replace suka with any name for shits and giggles. This is a Ukrainian combination and is extremely rude. One of Alexi’s favorites. Currently used by Ukrainian nationalists to refer to Vlad Putin.
“I don’t fucking care!”
“Cool!” Dicks are awesome, I guess.
“Poshel na huy!”
“Khuy tebe v zhopu!”
“Shove it (a dick) up your ass!”
“Khuy na ne!”
“No fucking way!”
“Why the fuck..?” Usually implies that you’re not interested in some offer.
“Ne valyai duraka!”
“Stop screwing around!” Add bonus dick by saying: “Ne valyahui duraka!”
Shit. Poop. Excrement. Ukrainians and Polish people often say ‘Korva!’ instead.
“Meni tse treba yak zuby v dupi.”
Ukrainian. Roughly translated, it means: “I need this like I need teeth in my ass.” My personal favorite. Alexi uses this when shit is pizdets’.
Bitch/whore! Pronounced kind of like ‘blyiad’ Often used as an affix.
Idiot. Someone who takes it in the zhopa.
Idi v zhopu
Go to hell. Literally ‘go up an ass’.
Virgin. Used in a derogatory fashion. Alexi hears that one a lot.
Damn!/Hell! Literally means ‘devil’. Often used in combination (Chyort voz’mi, chyort poberi!)
“Ya tebya imeyu!”
“I’m having you!” How to tell someone they’re your bitch.
Pedophile/pederast. Unfortunately still used as a slang term to describe someone who’s gay, as homosexuality and pedophilia are virtually synonymous in the minds of homophobic people in Eastern Europe.
Racist. What Russians call Ukrainians they don’t like.
Racist. What Ukrainians call Russians they don’t like.
What Ukrainians and Russians call Americans they don’t like. Very racist.
Literally means ‘garbage’. Generally used to refer to police.
Now if a Russian guy ever picks a fight with you, you know what to say in the seconds before you end up on your zhopa.