手玉に取るjuggle、千鳥足のstagger

前回 rig という単語を取り上げたが、これから連想したのが juggle である。

「ジャグリング」は日本語になっているが、この単語は rig や doctor と同じような意味も持つ。定義と例をオンライン辞書から載せておこう。

- to manipulate data in order to deceive

- juggling the company's books
- to juggle an account so as to hide a deficit
- to juggle the facts

juggle には、さらに、

- to manage or alternate the requirements of (two or more tasks, responsibilities, activities, etc.) so as to handle each adequately

- to organize information, figures, the money you spend, etc. in the most useful or effective way

という意味がある。うまくいかない場合に「お手玉」ということがあるのとは逆だ(この場合は fumble とでもいえばいいか)。クリッピングを調べたら、「仕事と育児の両立」、「(たくさんのものをさばく、うまくやりくりする」という日本語に当たりそうな、次の例が見つかった。

- Kyodo quoted Health Minister Hakuo Yanagisawa as telling local party members. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, who took office in September, has pledged to take steps to make it easier for people to juggle work and child-rearing.

- Researchers have programmed computers to play championship chess, calculate a collision between two galaxies and juggle a million airline reservations. But computers fail miserably at simulating the ordinary, experience-based intelligence that helps ordinary humans get through ordinary days. In other words, computers lack common sense, and that's why even the smartest ones are so dumb.

さらに、直接のつながりはないが、stagger という単語を連想した。「びっくりさせる」「よろよろ歩く」がよく知られていると思うが、「交互(互い違い)に並べる」「交代交代にする」「(予定)をずらす」という意味もある。辞書に次のような説明と例文が載っている。

- put things into alternating or zigzag pattern: to arrange things so that they do not form a straight line, especially in an alternating or zigzag pattern
"theater seats that were staggered for clear viewing"

- to arrange, especially hours of work, holidays or events, so that they begin at different times from those of other people
"stagger work shifts"
"Some countries have staggered school holidays so that holiday resorts do not become overcrowded."
"They planned to stagger lunch hours so that the cafeteria would not be rushed."