Fortunately, while we were busy fumbling with hand gestures and illustrations like cavemen, other cultures just made up the perfect words and phrases to encapsulate those little everyday moments filled with ... uh ... je ne sais quoi.
#9. Shemomedjamo (Georgian)
To eat past the point of being full just because the food tastes good.
Here is a word that describes such a quintessentially American phenomenon it's shocking that another culture came up with it first. After all, there are entire civilizations that have never heard of "never-ending pasta bowls" or "dessert pizzas." Fortunately, the Georgians (the European Georgians, that is) devised a word to describe it exactly. "Shemomedjamo" is the act of eating to the point where your body says, "OK, we did it! We're all done now," and then muscling through another three steaks.
Patriotism comes breaded and deep fried.
Which neatly brings us to ...
#8. Kummerspeck (German)
Excess weight gained from emotional overeating.
"Kummerspeck" translates to "grief bacon," a word that finally acknowledges that when we are under a crushing weight of sadness or stress, many of us skip alcohol and narcotics in favor of delicious fried meats.
"Oh God, it reminds me of heeeerrrrr!"
"No, you stud ... it's the number of girls you've slept with. Now let's leave the '80s and go the gym."
Please note that icing makes a godawful lubricant.
"Tastes like the cold embrace of a razor. Until you pair it with Easy Cheese. Then it tastes awesome."
#7. Hikikomori (Japanese)
A teenager or 20-something who has withdrawn from social life, often obsessed with TV and video games.
We need this word because we badly need to draw a distinction here. After all, we're long past the "If you play video games, you're a virgin who lives in your parents' basement" stereotype. Pretty much everyone under the age of 40 owns at least one game machine. And these days, "geek" basically refers to the 80 percent of people who like video games, sci-fi or comics. "Nerd" just means somebody who's really smart. So what's the term for, say, MMORPG players who get so sucked into their game that they just withdraw from life?
No idea. All we do is call 911 when the hallway starts to smell.
"Fus Ro Dah" is just Dovahkiin for "LOL stfu n00b."
Japan makes people want to curl up and hide? No, really.
#6. Gadrii Nombor Shulen Jongu (Tibetan)
Giving an answer that is unrelated to the question.
"Gadrii nombor shulen jongu" translates literally to "giving a green answer to a blue question," and you won't find a gushier spring of it than in political debates. It sounds like this:
Moderator: How do you respond to allegations that you funneled federal grant money into your string of underground toddler fighting arenas?
Candidate: You know, I really can't believe we're focusing on this silly "scandal" when what Americans are really worried about is jobs.
"I will create jobs for boxing managers and trainers. And maybe ninja knife fighters."
If you turn the sound off, it looks like a perfectly normal conversation between two batshit insane people.
And now your favorite musical genre is horse sex.
#5. Iktsuarpok (Inuit)
To go outside to check if an expected visitor has arrived, over and over again.
For lonely people eager to find new ways to express their loneliness, there is a new word that perfectly sums up the feeling of waiting for someone who, as time goes on, you realize probably isn't coming. We've all been guilty of "iktsuarpok" at one point or another, whether it's waiting for a prom date or waiting for a concealed-weapons permit in the mail after that prom fiasco. Time can seem to stretch on for eternity in moments that require you to wait on someone else, glancing out the window again and again, waiting for their car to pull into the driveway. The Inuit know the feeling so well they developed a word for it.
They have 40 words for "sudden onset cannibalism," too, if you're thinking of visiting.
"Just chopping up some nice ice logs for the ice fire."