Of course, we have “the” F-word, too, but I’ve already drank enough castor oil in my life that I don’t want to go down that road. Here are 7 other F-words that are essential to Russian Mennonite life. Know them, use them, and impress your Grandma Broesky.
- Faspa – The word “faspa” refers to a light lunch on Sunday afternoons after church, usually consisting of dill pickles, sliced cheese and cold cuts. It also usually involves long rolls of paper, crayons, and making out with Maria Friesen. “I’m starving! When is faspa ready?”
- Feld – This is simple enough. It means field, and in my observation, nearly every Mennonite darp is a feld of some sort: Kleefeld, Schanzenfeld, Bachfeld, Hochfeld, Gnadenfeld. How the name Steinbach was allowed to slip through the cracks I do not know. “Let’s go pick rocks out of the feld in Kleefeld.”
- Frintschoft – Frintschoft means “relatives.” This is very important to Mennonites so that we can know who to marry. “Oba, I’ve got frintschoft over there by Gnadenfeld.”
- Fleesch – This is meat. In case you’re unaware, Mennonites tend to be rather carnivorous. We slaughter animals and feast on their entrails every day to compensate for our pacifism. “Ach, why so many vegetables on the table, yet. Where is the fleesch?”
- Fe’schlucke – If you “fe’schlucke” on something it means it’s “gone down the wrong tube.” This choking substance could be anything from a long-lost Scrabble tile to a crokinole knipser, but most commonly it’s gnurpel or knackzoat shells. “Jauma Lied, I nearly fe’schlucked myself!”
- Formavorscht – This F-word means “farmer sausage.” It’s the tasty meaty stuff you eat with vereniki. You don’t have to be a farmer to eat it, but you do have to be a Mennonite. Actually, that’s not true. Everyone love formavorscht, right? Even Lutherans. “Do you prefer Pioneer or Winkler formavorscht?”
- Friesen – This is one of the most common Russian Mennonite surnames. According to a recent study, 68% of Daily Bonnet readers are Friesens. “Mayor Friesen is meeting with Pastor Friesen to discuss what to do about that Friesen family over on Friesen Avenue.”