Help me figure out the origin of this Italian-American slang word
February 1, 2014 12:37 PM Subscribe
I'm trying to figure out the origin of a particular Italian slang word my family uses that means "gaudy, tacky or overdone".
posted by Thin Lizzy to Writing & Language (29 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
The word sounds like GA-she-BAN-gee.
A few details that might help:
As with most Italian Americans, c is almost always pronounced as g, p as b, and t becomes th: i.e. cuccidati, the cookie, becomes GOO-chee-DATH-ee, pasta is basta.
Sometimes they use words that are only used by Italian Americans
, not Italians.
Unlike many Italian Americans they don't drop last syllable.
Unfortunately I can't ask the people who would actually remember the origin. The rest of us have just accepted it as a word used to describe "your cousin's wedding".