In my previous column I said my editor chastised me for explaining words that were too simple. I was so peeved I explained a few words in my previous column that stumped my editor. If you are “stumped”, it means you are unable to understand something because it is too difficult. If someone chastises you, it means that person scolds or criticizes you. If you are peeved, it means you are annoyed or irritated. I am still peeved at my editor for chastising me, so today I will take a dig at my editor. If you take a dig at someone, it means you deliberately insult or annoy that person. It is an American slang expression.
Before I take a dig at my editor, I want readers to know I asked for permission to name the editor. My editor said I should just say the name is Kelly instead of giving the full name. Is Kelly male or female? I can’t say because I am sworn to secrecy. If you are sworn to secrecy, it means you have promised not to tell anyone the secrets others have told you. I read a headline that Justice Secretary Teresa Cheng Yeuk-wah is mulling over a law that would ban facemasks for protesters. I will take a dig at Kelly by saying I am sure my editor doesn’t know what the word “mulling” means.
It means to think about something deeply for a long time. Cheng Yeuk-wah is thinking deeply about a new law that would make it a crime for protesters to wear facemasks. But what about peaceful protesters who have a cold, or violent protesters who do not want to spread their germs? I think Cheng Yeuk-wah should have her head examined if she thinks banning facemasks would stop people from protesting. If you say someone needs to have his or her head examined, it means that person is crazy or stupid. Protesters are not afraid of teargas and rubber bullets. Why would they be afraid of a law that bans facemasks?
在我上一篇文章中，我說我的編輯責備（chastised）我所解說的字詞太簡單。我生氣（peeved）得在上一篇文中解說了幾個難倒（stumped）我編輯的字詞。若你被stumped，即是說你搞不懂某事，因為它太深奧難懂了。若某人chastises 你，即是說他責備或批評你。若你是peeved，即是說你很不高興又或惱怒。對於我的編輯責備（chastising）我，我仍感生氣（peeved），因此今天我要 take a dig at我的編輯。若你 take a dig at someone，即是說你故意奚落或惹惱那人。這是一個美式俚語。
但在我挖苦（take a dig at）我的編輯之前，我想讓各位讀者知道我已經問准了可以開名。我的編輯說我只須說名字是 Kelly而毋須開全名。Kelly是男或女？我可不能說，因為我已 sworn to secrecy。若你是 sworn to secrecy，即是說你發誓了要保守秘密，不能對外洩露。我讀到一則新聞說，律政司司長鄭若驊正在mulling over一條法例，禁止示威者蒙面。我會挖苦（take a dig at）一下Kelly：敢肯定我的編輯不會知道 mulling一字是何解。
它的意思是去花一段時間仔細考慮。鄭若驊正在詳加考慮一條新的法例，令示威者蒙面這個行徑變成非法罪行。然而，要是和平的示威者有傷風感冒，又或暴力的示威者不想散播病菌呢？我想，鄭若驊若認為禁止蒙面可以阻止人們示威，她應該去驗一驗腦（head examined）。若你說某人應該 have his or her head examined，那即是說那人是瘋狂或愚笨的。示威者也不怕催淚彈與橡膠子彈了，他們怎麼又會害怕一條禁止面罩的法例呢？
Michael Chugani 褚簡寧