jacked up in your widgers

Discuss word origins and meanings.

jacked up in your widgers

Post by Archived Topic » Sat Dec 11, 2004 3:54 am

(Or maybe "wigers"?) I've been doing an English lit course in Bradford for 2 months and it's impossible! I've got this lunatic tutor who seems to hate Asians and all he tries to do is to confuse me...I'm sure. Now I've been set this essay to do based on this phrase. He won't even tell me what it means. He says I have to re-search it and find out for myself. He says I can get a clue in the Dutchess of Malfoy but I spent all Sunday on the internet and got nowhere.
Help!
Submitted by Nadir Eggingon (Bradford - England)
ACCESS_POST_ACTIONS
Signature: Topic imported and archived

jacked up in your widgers

Post by Archived Reply » Sat Dec 11, 2004 4:07 am

Nadir, on the basis of what you have written, my impression is that your tutor is setting you up to fail.

I have never heard the expression "jacked up in your widgers", which, if it exists at all, is certainly not common currency.

The _Cassell Dictionary of Slang_ has no entry for 'widger', but it does list 'widgey' (mainly 20th C. Irish) and 'widgie' (1950s+ Australian), both meaning 'vagina', with the Australian word also having pejorative connotations. The same dictionary gives a number of possible meanings for 'jack up', including 'to have sexual intercourse' (1960s+) and 'to ruin, to exhaust completely' (late 19th C.+), 'to give up' (same date), esp. a love affair. Also late 19th C.+ is 'to jack up on', meaning 'to show disapproval, to withdraw one's co-operation'.

So there is no good fit between the expression you have been given to write about and the possible headwords and definitions contained in Cassell. That is not to say that Cassell can be regarded as a definitive arbiter in this context -- both I and other contributors to this site have come across quite a few errors in it in the past -- but the fact that neither 'jack up in' or 'widgers' (which I note is plural, rather than singular -- most women have a single vagina at most) are given entries, makes me suspicious of your tutor and his motives.

Equally, Google did not find any reference to the "Dutchess of Malfoy" (did your tutor write it down for you with the spelling 'Malfoy'? This belongs to a Harry Potter character!). You might want to check out John Webster's "Duchess of Malfi" instead (note the spelling of both the main words in the title).

Even if the expression you asked about does in fact exist, I question the educational value of devoting a paper to it. Whatever it is supposed to mean, it must have such a narrow application that it would be more appropriate to a highly specialised course rather than a general Eng. Lit. course.

Are others in your class having problems of this kind with your tutor? If so, it may be worth making a formal joint complaint about his questionable teaching methods and inappropriate learning objectives.

At the very least, I suggest you confront him about these issues and demand that he should justify the value of his assignment to you in the broader context of its applicability to English literature. You might even warn him that you (with others) are preparing to file a complaint against him with the academic authorities of your institution, and that you will submit it to them if he does not immediately shape up and stop behaving like a prick. This might be particularly effective if you are able to provide evidence of racial discrimination in his treatment of the class members. If you take this course, confronting him as a group of three or more should be particularly effective. You can remind him that you have paid good money for your course and that you are entitled to receive correspondingly good support and tuition from the teaching staff of the institution. In my view, this does not include having to guess what your assignments are supposed to consist of.

Finally, I must draw your attention to a couple of additional spelling mistakes in your posting besides 'dutchess', namely 'tuter' (tutor) and 're-search' (research). This is perhaps a minor issue, but if your tutor is trying to make you feel inadequate, criticising your ability to spell would be an easy way for him to do it. So I suggest that (if you are not already doing so), you use the spell-checker facilities of your WP program before submitting any written work, as well as reading it over separately to check that it does not contain such common transpositions as 'form'/'from' or grammatical faults (such as sentences without verbs, which can occur if you rephrase them in your mind as you are writing them).

Anyhow, good luck in resolving the issues with your tutor!
Reply from Erik Kowal ( - England)
ACCESS_POST_ACTIONS
Signature: Reply imported and archived

jacked up in your widgers

Post by Archived Reply » Sat Dec 11, 2004 4:21 am

Nadir, Unless you are in the ‘depths’ of ‘egging us on,’ I do have something to add, but this is so obscure as not, in my view, to be a reasonable question. And I therefore tend to agree with the sentiments of Erik Kowal on this subject. But I do, nevertheless, believe we could be a bit closer to the answer, if there is one.

WIDGER: 1) A small boy: Royal Navy since late 1950s. Perhaps derived from dialect; or from ‘wee,’ very small + ‘-dger,’ of such words as ‘bodger’ (an incompetent mender of things, a ‘botcher’), ‘codger (an eccentric old man). 2) A gardening tool consisting of a small strip of metal with a shallow furrow down the centre, used as a miniature trowel to move seedlings, cultivate pot plants, etc. [from nonsense definition used to test the memorizing ability of British Naval Cadets]

JACKED UP: [by 1970s’] 1) adjective phrase: stimulated, exhilarated = high <“. . . all the parents were jacked up on coffee”> <“I was jacked up coming in, then I faced reality . . .:> [probably from ‘jagged up’ [1737], drunk] 2) adjective phrase: Elevated especially by artifice; = JUMPED-UP <“That he is a jacked-up cowboy and minor film-star is a libel.”>

JUMPED UP: [by 1835] adjective: Elevated above one’s proper status; = JACKED UP ‘Chiefly British’ <The elite regard me as a jumped-up interloper.>

So if one said ‘jacked up widgers,’ I would say that this phrase makes perfect sense – a small boys who puffs themselves up trying to act or pass themselves off as older (i.e. little kids putting on a pretense). However, ‘jacked up in your widgers’ doesn’t seem to make much sense unless it is some form of dialect that means or is related to ‘jacked up widgers.’ And a gardening tool connection doesn’t seem to fit at all, but it does provide a connection to the British Navy.

(Eric Partridge’s A Dictionary of Slang, Chapman’s Dictionary of American Slang, Oxford English Dictionary, World Wide Words)
_______________________

Ken G – November 22, 2004
Reply from Ken Greenwald (Fort Collins, CO - U.S.A.)
ACCESS_POST_ACTIONS
Signature: Reply imported and archived

jacked up in your widgers

Post by Archived Reply » Sat Dec 11, 2004 4:34 am

One of the problems with all these dictionary definitions, including those that I cited earlier, is that they are completely inconsistent chronologically with 'The Duchess of Malfi' (if that clue is not a complete red herring). I reproduce below some background notes taken from http://www.bartleby.com/47/4/1001.html :

"Of John Webster’s life almost nothing is known. The dates 1580–1625 given for his birth and death are conjectural inferences, about which the best that can be said is that no known facts contradict them.
The first notice of Webster so far discovered shows that he was collaborating in the production of plays for the theatrical manager, Henslowe, in 1602, and of such collaboration he seems to have done a considerable amount. Four plays exist which he wrote alone, “The White Devil,” “The Duchess of Malfi,” “The Devil’s Law-Case,” and “Appius and Virginia.”
“The Duchess of Malfi” was published in 1623, but the date of writing may have been as early as 1611. It is based on a story in Painter’s “Palace of Pleasure,” translated from the Italian novelist, Bandello; and it is entirely possible that it has a foundation in fact. In any case, it portrays with a terrible vividness one side of the court life of the Italian Renaissance; and its picture of the fierce quest of pleasure, the recklessness of crime, and the worldliness of the great princes of the Church finds only too ready corroboration in the annals of the time.
Webster’s tragedies come toward the close of the great series of tragedies of blood and revenge, in which “The Spanish Tragedy” and “Hamlet” are landmarks, but before decadence can fairly be said to have set in. He, indeed, loads his scene with horrors almost past the point which modern taste can bear; but the intensity of his dramatic situations, and his superb power of flashing in a single line a light into the recesses of the human heart at the crises of supreme emotion, redeems him from mere sensationalism, and places his best things in the first rank of dramatic writing."
Reply from Erik Kowal ( - England)
ACCESS_POST_ACTIONS
Signature: Reply imported and archived

jacked up in your widgers

Post by Archived Reply » Sat Dec 11, 2004 4:47 am

I don't know if this has anything to do with it,
but there is the slang term wedgie, to grab the back of
someones pants and pull up hard. Done mainly on sports
fields by young men. So jacked up the wedgie would work!!

Reply from Gary Wallington (Akolele - Australia)
ACCESS_POST_ACTIONS
Signature: Reply imported and archived

jacked up in your widgers

Post by Archived Reply » Sat Dec 11, 2004 5:01 am

Gary, I was thinking of the same thing. My son (17 years old) and his friends use to do this very often and it is quite painful. Now in our neck of the woods they actually grab the back of your underwear and pull real hard,hence,giving some one a wedgie. Gary, I was very impressed with the beauty of your back yard, it kind of reminds me of back home, the golden beaches and deep blue sea.
Ahmed
22nd November,2004
Reply from Ahmed ELNamer (Dawson Creek - Canada)
ACCESS_POST_ACTIONS
Signature: Reply imported and archived

jacked up in your widgers

Post by Archived Reply » Sat Dec 11, 2004 5:14 am

Gary and Ahmed, if you can explain the link between a wedgie and a 17th-century play (remembering that the context is an English literature course), you are both more talented than I give you credit for.

But don't let that stop you from trying.
Reply from Erik Kowal ( - England)
ACCESS_POST_ACTIONS
Signature: Reply imported and archived

jacked up in your widgers

Post by Archived Reply » Sat Dec 11, 2004 5:27 am

For what it's worth, the text of the Duchess of Malfi is on http://www.gutenberg.org, and a search for anything with "jack" turns up nothing. Either Nadir is winding us up or his tutor is winding him up. Given the tone of some recent threads, I can't help feeling it's the former.
Reply from Phil White (Munich - Germany)
ACCESS_POST_ACTIONS
Signature: Reply imported and archived

jacked up in your widgers

Post by Archived Reply » Sat Dec 11, 2004 5:41 am

Oh my gosh, what can i do? I never thought for a momentthat he was being dirty with me. Now I cant look him in the eyes again in case ofwhat he is thinking. I cant believe that he is in some way making a dirty joke, but I don't know how. OK some of the other tutors like to flirt with the girls, but thats OK. This man is old like my gradfather. How can I say anything to him? Please tell me you are joking with me. It is better you are being cruel to me than I go to him and tell all this about femael parts and sex. If I do then he will surely think I am trying to be dirty with him. What can i do. You speak like you are so sure, but how can I tell this to him. What can i do?
Nadir
Reply from Nadir Eggingon (Bradford - England)
ACCESS_POST_ACTIONS
Signature: Reply imported and archived

jacked up in your widgers

Post by Archived Reply » Sat Dec 11, 2004 5:54 am

Let me for a moment assume that your query is not the wind-up that Phil suggests.

You have got to stop thinking so defensively and start asserting yourself. You are not a little girl any longer.

The point here is not whether your tutor will think you are trying to flirt with him, but whether his own actions are appropriate both in relation to the educational content of the course and in relation to you as a student.

Believe me, if he has really been behaving as badly as your description suggests, he has potentially laid himself open to a lot of trouble at the hands of your institution's authorities.

It's now up to you to force a credible confrontation with him (with the assistance of your fellow course members if necessary) and be prepared to follow through with a formal complaint. You can also seek the assistance of your official student representative in handling this matter.

Life's too short to allow yourself to be walked over by people who are mostly interested in exerting power over you. You have more power in this situation than you appear to realise. Use it!
Reply from Erik Kowal ( - England)
ACCESS_POST_ACTIONS
Signature: Reply imported and archived

jacked up in your widgers

Post by Archived Reply » Sat Dec 11, 2004 6:07 am

Nadir, I know I went off topic and did not mean to scare you. Seriously though you do have to take control of this situation and assert yourself as Erik suggested. According to what you have said this problem (your tutor possibly flirting with you) is faced by other students. This is an abuse of power and if you are not able to rectify it independently with your tutor, then you should bring it to the attention of your student advisor. I hope it works out for you and good luck.
Ahmed
23rd of November 2004

Reply from Ahmed ELNamer (Dawson Creek - Canada)
ACCESS_POST_ACTIONS
Signature: Reply imported and archived

jacked up in your widgers

Post by Archived Reply » Sat Dec 11, 2004 6:21 am

Nadir is the opposite of zenith,
and Egging on could be what you're doing?
Reply from Gary Wallington (Akolele - Australia)
ACCESS_POST_ACTIONS
Signature: Reply imported and archived

jacked up in your widgers

Post by Archived Reply » Sat Dec 11, 2004 6:34 am

Nadir (masc.) is not usually name chosen for a woman. Nadira is its fem. form. In Arabic it also means "Rare".
Ahmed
23rd of November 2004
Reply from Ahmed ELNamer (Dawson Creek - Canada)
ACCESS_POST_ACTIONS
Signature: Reply imported and archived

jacked up in your widgers

Post by Archived Reply » Sat Dec 11, 2004 6:47 am

Why does the word snookered come to mind?
_______________________

Ken G – November 23, 2004
Reply from Ken Greenwald (Fort Collins, CO - U.S.A.)
ACCESS_POST_ACTIONS
Signature: Reply imported and archived

jacked up in your widgers

Post by Archived Reply » Sat Dec 11, 2004 7:14 am

Hello Nadir:
I hope you're not too down about all this, but all your problems are over. I think I may have the solution for you.
I had occasion during one summer holiday several years ago to take a train from Teignmouth to Bude. During the exceptionally uncomfortable journey (this was in the days before regional modernisation took place and the seats were like crushed oxen carts) two working chaps took the seat opposite mine.
I was fascinated to hear their local dialect, as it was not easy to decipher. At one point they explored their lunch boxes and one said to the other what sounded like (and I'll try to wtite this phonitically):
"Yer, bye, whochu got jacked up in yer widgers, then?"
To which the other replied:
"Well I got chicken widgers an I got spam too. Missus dun me proud today."
Sorry Ken, I don't have written confirmation of this, you'll have to take my word, or not.
Although how this connects with the Duchess of Malfi is anyone's guess.
And don't take any nonsense from that teacher of yours young lady!
Reply from Leighton Harris (Cambridge - England)
ACCESS_POST_ACTIONS
Signature: Reply imported and archived

Post Reply