My best friend sent me the following video:
Cinematically, it’s really impressive, requiring really complicated camera choreography (note that you can’t see the camera reflected in any of the dozens of mirrors). The dancing, which is what he wanted me to see and be amused by, is also pretty striking but after a minute, it was the song that stood out.
“That sounds like English but it’s totally not,” I thought. The singer, Adriano Celentano, confirmed my suspicion in an interview last year:
“Ever since I started singing, I was very influenced by American music and everything Americans did. So at a certain point, because I like American slang — which, for a singer, is much easier to sing than Italian — I thought that I would write a song which would only have as its theme the inability to communicate. And to do this, I had to write a song where the lyrics didn’t mean anything.”
This reminded me that the word “barbarian” came from how the Greeks interpreted the language of foreign invaders. It all sounded like “bar-bar” to them.
According to my dictionary, the following are all ways of expressing gobbledygook in English, and they’re all great words.
gibberish, claptrap, nonsense, rubbish, balderdash, blather, garbage;
mumbo jumbo, drivel,tripe, hogwash, baloney, bilge, bull,
bunk, guff, eyewash, piffle, twaddle, poppycock, phooey, hooey.