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Thread: "Red-Hot Mamma" - a cultural reference?

  1. #1
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    "Red-Hot Mamma" - a cultural reference?

    In a TV show about Lenny Bruce, someone says about his mother "Sally Marr, boy, she's the last of the red-hot mammas."

    Of course, I tried googling for "red-hot mam(m)a". Most links either don't contain anything in the way of explanation or point to (a) a 1936 cartoon, or (b) a broadway show.

    The title of the cartoon seems to be a pun on an already well-known expression. The broadway show deals with life of a Broadway singer. So, apparently, "red-hot mamma" can be used to refer to a certain type, or a certain generation, of female performers. Probably Jewish ones (there are some indications of that). So much I was able to gather.

    However, I am still struggling with finding an idiomatic translation of this expression. Which means I don't understand it well enough .

    Obviously, literal translation won't work, since it will communicate exactly nothing to a general Russian TV viewer not exposed to Amercan culture.

    So, what does the sentence I quoted at the beginning of this post communicate to an American? "Sally Marr is the last of _______ " ?

  2. #2
    DDT
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    I don't know when or how the expression came about but I do know that it was quite popular in the 1970's. A red hot mama was used to describe any beautiful or sexy girl. Usually it was just said as, "She's a hot mama." I don't know anyone who would have used the expression without a slight hint of humour while saying it though. It is something that was probably used more in song lyrics that in real life. It had nothing to do with being Jewish or any other race or any profession.
    I've heard that the expression dates back to the 20's and it meant the same thing then.
    So, I think that if I heard the expression now I would say that it would depend on what the person talking thought was a red hot mama.
    Let me be a free man, free to travel, free to stop, free to work, free to trade where I choose, free to choose my own teachers, free to follow the religion of my fathers, free to talk, think and act for myself. - Chief Joseph, Nez Perce

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    Lingvo12:

    a hot mama
    амер.; жарг.
    (a (red) hot mam(m)a)

    знойная женщина, "секс-бомба"

  4. #4
    Властелин charlestonian's Avatar
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    All the above. Red-hot = not just hot but extremely hot
    Well, I don't know what to say. I want to say thanks to the Academy, to Mama, to Papa and to my dog. I love you all.

  5. #5
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    Kk thanks for the input, guys .

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    DDT
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    Here! I found you a red hot mama costume just in case you need one...I mean you never know do you?

    REDHOTMAMA'SforTRANSLATORS
    Let me be a free man, free to travel, free to stop, free to work, free to trade where I choose, free to choose my own teachers, free to follow the religion of my fathers, free to talk, think and act for myself. - Chief Joseph, Nez Perce

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by DDT
    Here! I found you a red hot mama costume just in case you need one...I mean you never know do you?

    REDHOTMAMA'SforTRANSLATORS
    She's not red-hot, not even hot to me.
    «И всё, что сейчас происходит внутре — тоже является частью вселенной».

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    Завсегдатай Ramil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DDT
    Here! I found you a red hot mama costume just in case you need one...I mean you never know do you?

    REDHOTMAMA'SforTRANSLATORS
    What a splendid cheap hooker's garment!
    Send me a PM if you need me.

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    Old hooker's.
    «И всё, что сейчас происходит внутре — тоже является частью вселенной».

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    DDT
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    Well, she is hot enough for DDT.

    If you Russians don't think that she is hot then I think that there must be a whole lot of unattended Russian girls who may need my gigolo services after all!

    I think that Vladimir Putin will give me a medal.
    Let me be a free man, free to travel, free to stop, free to work, free to trade where I choose, free to choose my own teachers, free to follow the religion of my fathers, free to talk, think and act for myself. - Chief Joseph, Nez Perce

  11. #11
    Завсегдатай Ramil's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by DDT
    Well, she is hot enough for DDT.

    If you Russians don't think that she is hot then I think that there must be a whole lot of unattended Russian girls who may need my gigolo services after all!

    I think that Vladimir Putin will give me a medal.
    And I'm sure, your mom and dad will be proud of you
    Send me a PM if you need me.

  12. #12
    JB
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    And for every baby you create you'll get a cash present from Putin!
    Toto, I've a feeling we're not in Kansas anymore.

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