Today’s amusing German word is Schwung, which can be translated as “panache”. Whenever this word is spoken one must clench a fist and do a slow motion right hook, grimacing with pleasure. It also reminds me of some classic dialogue from 1992’s excellent In the Line of Fire; Clint is an ageing but cruel Secret Service agent, Malkovitch an ex-CIA assassin after the President. Clint investigates Malk’s apartment after the landlady reports it to be full of JFK death memoribilia; the next evening, Malk calls:

Clint: Who the hell is this?

Malk: That was you in my apartment last night.

Clint: McCrawley?

Malk: Why not call me Booth?

Clint: Why not Oswald?

Malk: Because Booth had flair, panache – the leap to the stage after he shot Lincoln.

And later, Clint instructs the Secret Service to put a tap on his phone:

Agent: What makes you think he’ll call again?

Clint: He’ll call again, he’s got panache.

Agent: “Panache”?

Clint: Yeah, it means flamboyance.

Agent: I know what it means.

Clint: Really? I had to look it up.

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