Why do I call a pacifier a "goots"?
December 26, 2006 11:58 AM   Subscribe

Anybody else grow up calling a pacifier, a "goots"? I'm not sure if I'm spelling it correctly, but that's how it sounds (rhymes with boots). I'm not Jewish, but that word sounds Yiddish to me. Now I've got a kid of my own, and everybody thinks I'm crazy because I call it a goots. Is it a name brand? West Michigan Polish/Italian slang? Or what?
posted by elvissinatra to Writing & Language (24 answers total)
I've never heard that term before, but it sounds like Dutch to me.
posted by Steven C. Den Beste at 12:04 PM on December 26, 2006

Funny, we called them nookies. I have no idea why.
posted by thinkpiece at 12:14 PM on December 26, 2006

Binkies here. Never heard of "goots", but why not call it a goots?
posted by JohnnyGunn at 12:22 PM on December 26, 2006

Thinkpiece, you call it a nookie because of the name brand NUK. I'm guessing there's a similar etymology for goots, but I have no idea what...
posted by elvissinatra at 12:27 PM on December 26, 2006

Huh. I wonder why we called it an "ish," then?
posted by scody at 12:40 PM on December 26, 2006

yiddish, it's not! (its a 'tzumee' in yiddish...!)
posted by Izzmeister at 12:41 PM on December 26, 2006

That's right, elvissinatra! It's been a long time, I'd forgotten. NUK became nukkies, then. Thank you.
posted by thinkpiece at 12:49 PM on December 26, 2006

Tzumee? Where did you get that? I've seen sharopnikel , but no tzumee.
posted by brookeb at 1:18 PM on December 26, 2006

Binkie was a brand name back when.
posted by unrepentanthippie at 1:24 PM on December 26, 2006

WM native here - never heard of the word. Was always a binkie to me.
posted by Baby_Balrog at 2:09 PM on December 26, 2006

A friend from Australia calls it a "dummy." I can only remember calling them pacifiers or nuks.
posted by bonheur at 2:12 PM on December 26, 2006

my girlfiend is from minnesota, this sounds like something she would call a pacifier, just based on the words she has for other things. anyone other than me never heard of zoobas? or padiddle? anyway i'll ask her about goots, she's bound to know something.
posted by nola at 3:09 PM on December 26, 2006

I got tzumiee from my own vocabulay- I speak yiddish (several dialects.)

never heard of that word (sharopnikel) at all...
posted by Izzmeister at 4:15 PM on December 26, 2006

Maybe it comes from the French "goût" (a taste). At times it was common to dip a pacifier in something sweet.
posted by MonkeySaltedNuts at 5:24 PM on December 26, 2006

My wife's family calls it a "geegee".
posted by Dizzy at 6:56 PM on December 26, 2006

it might be one of those things that kids make up a name for when they are just learning to talk, and it sticks for that particular family.

for instance our 2nd daughter started calling her pacifier a "meemee" and so now that's what we all call them...
posted by joeblough at 9:07 PM on December 26, 2006

it was also called a nook (from NUK) for me. maybe that's what it was and got chanced to goot.
posted by nadawi at 9:23 PM on December 26, 2006

We called them dummies.
posted by acoutu at 11:24 PM on December 26, 2006

"Bubble" or "binky." So, ya, I'd say with all certainty: you are indeed crazy. ;)
posted by The Deej at 2:02 AM on December 27, 2006

Binkie was a brand name back when.

Thanks -- I heard this recently for the first time, and wondered why.
posted by Rash at 6:24 AM on December 27, 2006

OK, I've posted about this (self-link, obviously), so we'll see if the knowledgeable crew of LH readers can come up with anything useful. I'll report back if they do.
posted by languagehat at 7:49 AM on December 27, 2006

My mother always used the word "suce", but I found out later that's French, and in Montreal it's not a surprise for a French expression to be used.
posted by zadcat at 9:17 AM on December 27, 2006

Interim report: This comment looks like a promising lead.
Any relation to German (regional, dialectal -- Swabian, I think) "Gutsel", which might be translated as "goodie", maybe? It usually refers to a piece of hard candy, though I wouldn't be surprised if there were dialects that have it with the "pacifier" meaning.
Posted by: Chris Waigl at December 27, 2006 07:14 PM
Note that Gutsel is pronounced "GOOT-sel."
posted by languagehat at 5:19 PM on December 27, 2006

Gutti are Roman baby bottles. There's some information on them that might be helpful here and here, but it's all in German.
Short summary: The word "gutti" comes from Greek "gutta", "drop", pacifiers are still called "Gutzi" or "Gutsi" in some part(s) of Germany.
posted by snownoid at 8:04 PM on December 27, 2006

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