Not a euphemism to be had for love nor money, as I've been very sensible all day - apart from a small (but explosive) rant about the Middle Classes of Bristol snorting cocaine whilst asking whether the milk in their Fairtrade coffee is organic.
So to cheer myself up (being sensible is vile), I've unearthed my Latin exercise book. (It was buried in the garden in a Huntley & Palmers biscuit tin, so that verb is fully justified.) On p.3 a bold, cross scrawl: Number your pages and name your book! On the front cover in careful copperplate I have printed: I name this book Polyphemus III. I was an irritating little git from the start.
I should have paid more attention in Latin. Really. My ma(ter) said it would come in useful (it hasn't) and that I'd thank her for forcing me to take it (I don't) and that it would help with my English (my English was fine by itself, thanks all the same). And how much fun was to be had in the act of declining. (You're telling me.) Still, now that I have reached the Age of Reason, it would be nice to nod gently at the Young Scholars and say something witty in Roman.
In the High School on a hill in Yorkshire (posts passim), any child too dim for bottom set French had to study Classical Greek, so I suppose I should count myself lucky.
My Latin translations have comments (scrawled in a bolder, even crosser hand): Where is the comprehension? Feeble. You have not thought very hard about this. This is ridiculous. You are writing absolute nonsense. RUBBISH. Most pathetic. And no mark is above zero. Most are well into the minuses.
This is immensely cheering. And my feeble, rubbish, ridiculous attempts at translation are even more cheering. Occasionally, younger relatives beg, wheedle and cajole, 'Please, please, read your Latin translations, O Moptop. Read the one where Caesar burns his socks and trips over a centurion. Or the one where as Antoninus is hesitating, the Volcis put up their tents and proceed to run about which greatly worries the Romans.'
My final translation, before I sat (and somehow passed) an O Level, reads: The camp of Pompeius was attacked by cohorts of whom there were some left defended bravely. But the rest of the soldiers who had fought, who had frightened them and were tired, left their weapons and thought about the camp's defenders. Then when he threw down spears into the mountain and or valley -
See? Latin didn't do my English any good at all.
But what's this? A final sentence: out of breath they weren't able to keep it up for long.
It might not be the euphemism I've spent the day looking for, but on a wet Tuesday evening an entendre - even one as obvious as this - is not to be sniffed at.
GAVDIVM. MIHI. VAE. TIBI.