Difference between Schmo and Shmoo
Difference between Schmo and Shmoo
What is a Schmo?
A ‘Schmo’ is a well-known fictional name given to someone (generally of the male persuasion) who is seen as a foolish or stupid person. In other words, a jerk. The word can also be spelled ‘schmoe’ or ‘shmo.’
Where did the word come from? The prefix, ‘shm’, was adapted from the Yiddish which meant to dismiss or diminish something.
Examples: Mother to child: “Rain, shmain, you have to go to school.”
Wife to husband: “Golf, shmolf, you need to mow the lawn.”
The Oxford English Dictionary supports another etymology: the prefix is a shortening of the Yiddish word, ‘schmuck’ which means a clumsy or stupid person; an oaf. Or the Yiddish word, ‘shmok’ which means penis.
Ode to Joe the Schmo
Joe the Schmo walks into a bar.
He sits at the bar an hour or more.
He stares at his drink. He stares at the door.
He stares at the bar. He stares at the floor.
He does not take a sip,
Just heaves some great big sighs,
As tears begin to form
At the corners of his eyes.
One of the guys at the bar
Decides to play a joke.
He picks up Joe’s whiskey,
And drinks it down like Coke.
That’s when Joe starts to cry,
You would think he lost his mother.
The guy at the bar tells him,
“Don’t cry, I’ll buy you another!
“I saw that you weren’t drinking,
So I drank your drink in fun.
It is not worth any tears.
Bartender, another one.”
“It’s not just that,” says Joe.
“It’s all that happened today –
The worst day of my life.
Look, all my hair turned gray.
“First my alarm failed to work.
I did not awake until eight.
Then when I got to my job,
My boss fired me for being late.
“As I left the building,
What did I step in but poop?
My car was not in the lot,
Someone had stolen my coupe.
“On the back seat of my car,
I left my wallet and cellphone.
So I had to walk five miles,
In order to reach my home.
“My wife did not expect me,
I usually get home at night.
So where did I find her?
In bed! … Alone? … Not quite!
“With her was my best friend,
Seems he was her best friend, too.
I didn’t know about their affair,
I did not have a clue.
“I loved that woman,
I gave her my soul.
She stomped on my heart
And left a big hole.
“So I made up my mind to end it all
And I would have done so in a minute.
Then what do you do but drink my drink,
With all the rat poison in it!”
What is a Shmoo?
Do not confuse the Schmo with the Shmoo.
The Shmoo is a lovable, fictional cartoon animal created by Al Capp in his comic strip, ‘Li’l Abner.’ It first appeared in August, 1948.
The Shmoo looks like a plump white bowling pin with round, stubby feet.
It has eyebrows and a few whiskers and a constant smile.
No arms, no nose, no ears.
Small hearts appear over its head when it expresses love.
Ode to the Shmoo
I found you so many years ago
When introduced by writer, Al Capp.
I was a fan of his 'Li'l Abner,'
And you, the Shmoo, became lagniappe.
Daisy Mae was the love interest
Of Li'l Abner, Capp's sturdy hero.
It seemed to be a one-way romance
Since Abner's interest was zero.
The comic strip described Dogpatch,
A fictional Utopian place.
The backwoods residents were folksy
With a pleasant hillbilly grace.
Mammy Yokum was the matriarch;
She constantly smoked a corncob pipe.
Handsome Li'l Abner loved his mother;
He was the strong, stalwart silent type.
Into their private world in Dogpatch,
Capp, the cartoonist, brought the Shmoo.
It was an animal like no other,
You would never find it in a zoo.
What did this sweet little creature look like?
Can you picture a plump white bowling pin?
Black eyebrows and very sparse whiskers,
But no arms, no nose, no ears and no chin.
Though a Shmoo may look a bit awkward,
It can move quickly on short, stubby legs.
They can multiply faster than rabbits,
And, on demand, produce free packaged eggs.
If you look at a Shmoo when you're hungry,
Then the Shmoo is more than eager to please.
It jumps onto a frying pan or grill,
So you can feast with the greatest of ease.
Hard to believe, I know, but it is so.
When broiled, the Shmoo will taste just like steak.
When fried, it will taste like fried chicken.
Is catfish your wish? the Shmoo you must bake.
Has your appetite begun to quicken?
Then one more fact I really should mention.
Shmoos are gentle and ideal with children.
As playmates they add another dimension.
They can be your nanny
When you can't find granny.
My love for the Shmoo is unconditional. It is too bad they are only fictional.
© Copyright BJ Rakow, Ph.D. 2015. All rights reserved. Author, "Much of What You Know about Job Search Just Ain't So."