Passing Phrase -


Literally: Wheeling-dealing
Idiomatically: Not serious / shady

The etiology of this word is fascinating. Most know that it comes from the Arabic مَسْخَرَة‎ ("masḵara") meaning something ridiculous or a buffoon. But from there the journey continues: In Italian the word became "Maschera" which referred to theatrical makeup, which then became mascara. Ironically it referred to the darkening of eyebrows and mustaches of men. This morphed into masquerade and yes the pre-mentioned "mask".

In modern Hebrew it refers to a commercial dealing which is a bit shady.

A reporter complaining about how professional sports work exclaimed:

הכל שוק מסחרה, קומבינות.

"hakol shuk maschara, kombinot."

Everything is a marketplace, shady dealings, and combinations.

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