Translate this to Hebrew or Yiddish

I’d like to find the equivalent in Hebrew or Yiddish of a couple of dated English colloquialisms.

Specifically, “cool” and “out of sight” in their 1960s sense: neat, good, positive. Ideally, the Hebrew/Yiddish versions would also be slang, although understandable to a modern-day Hebrew speaker. That is, not something you’d have to be a Rabbinical scholar to get.

Another phrase: “just right,” as in “those girls look just right.” (More or less synonymous with the first two, I guess.)

Along with any suggestions, please provide a pronunciation guide (including which syllables are stressed) so that I won’t mangle them when I try to say them.


The Oxford Hebrew Dictionary that Alessan recommended to me says גזעי giz‘i or מגניב magniv.

Hmm, that would make a “cool” X-Men character – Magnivo.

“Giz’i” is archaic - I haven’t heard it used non-sarcastically since the 80’s. “Magniv” is still current, although it’s been around for a while; kids these days may have something more up to date.

Damn. Now you made me feel my age (I’ll be 32 next week. Sob).

For “Just Right” I’d probably use “B’seder Gamur” בסדר גמור, although that would probably be closer to “All Right” (as in “those girls look all right” - it’s all in the proper emphasis). Alternately, you can use “C’mo Shetzarich” כמו שצריך (“just as needed”) which has basically the same meaning. Now that I think of it, the latter phrase seems closer to what you’re looking for.

Pronunciation guide:

Magniv - Mug-NEEV (or possibly mug-NEEEEEEEEEEV, which means, well, coooooooooool).

B’seder Gamur - bih-SEH-der gah-MOOR (stress the second word a bit more)

C’mo Shetzarich - cih-MOH sheh-tzah-REECH (stress the first word a bit more; the CH is gutteral - you probably know that, but you should bear in mind that some Israeli slang uses the English-style CH, too).

Might I ask the purpose behind the request?

Thanks to both of you. (And anyone else who might want to confirm these or offer some alternatives.)

I’m modifying the lyrics to a song that I plan to sing to a young woman who’s going to study in Israel for six months.

The song is “Off to Denver” by Corky Seigel, and the verse in question (with my modifications in parens) is:

Now she’s off to Denver (Israel) by herself,
All the boys in Denver (Israel) they look just right
With their long brown hair (ringlets) and their knapsacks on their backs (yarmulkes on their heads)
She says, They’re cool, they’re out of sight."

As you can see, I could use replacements for both “cool” and “out of sight,” not just one. If giz’i has a dated feel to it, but would be understandable to a young person today, it would be fine. Is it pronounced GEE-zee, with a hard G?

Based on the Hebrew spelling, it’s a hard G, but “Magniv” is more common. I’ve also heard “sabahba” for cool, though I don’t know how common that is. (I’ve heard Israelis use it, but I’m American.)