Archive for December, 2005

Answer That Damned Phone

“Give me a bell.”

Some people believe that this saying is a reference to the telephone’s alleged inventor, Alexander Graham Bell.

I’d say the more logical explanation is that when you dialed somebody’s number in the old days, the bell on their phone would ring, which is why we now say, “give me a ring” instead.

In either case, I’d be tempted to respond in the literal sense, just to be a pedantic asshole.

Another expression is, “Give me a tinkle.” I’ve no idea where that comes from but know that it means people want you to you to call them.

There used to be a sign in the school toilets: “If you sprinkle when you tinkle, always wipe the seat.”

A brief note: Readers may be interested in research by the BBC and OED into origins and meanings of words for a new series called Balderdash and Piffle. Find out more at: http://www.bbc.co.uk/history/programmes/wordhunt/


Read Full Post »

Gizza Bin Lid

Funny stuff money is. Well, at least it is in the UK.

Before decimalisation there used to be 240 pence in a pound. Now we have just a 100. The biggest rip-off ever.

But enough of me moaning and on with the post.

Starting with the lower denominations we have a penny, pence being the plural.

The two penny piece is called a tupp’ny bit.

A five pence piece is a bob.

Ten and twenty pence pieces…nothing sparkling there that I know of.

Fifty pence is a spanner or ten bob bit.

A pound coin is a nicker, bin lid, quid, or nugget.

A two pound coin is a double nugget.

A five pound note is a Lady Godiva, rhyming slang for fiver. Sometimes just called a lady. Up north we sometimes call them a George from when they used to have a picture of George Stephenson on the back.

A ten pound note, more commonly known as a tenner, is also known as a Henry, from King Henry the Eighth, because an eight of cannabis resin costs 10 pounds…not that I’d know anything about that.

A twenty pound note is known as the obvious ‘score’ but there are numerous examples of rhyming slang, such as Severn Bore, from the River Severn.

There isn’t such a thing as a twenty-five pound note (unless you count the ones made by illiterate forgers) but this sum of money is known as ‘a pony’.

A fifty pounds note is known as a bullseye.

One hundred pounds is known as a ton.

Five hundred pounds is ‘a monkey’

Right, I’m going to stop there before you die of boredom or sue me for retina damage.

Read Full Post »

The Festive Season

“I’m podged now”

For years I’ve heard this saying, not really knowing the origins of it, yet understanding that when we’re podged we’ve had far too much too eat.

I expect those of us who celebrate Christmas will be well podged at some point.

Then there’s the small matter of alcohol. People will bring out the wine, the beer, the eggnog, the single malt.

Some of us will overindulge *cough* and no doubt end up praying to the porcelain god, should we be lucky enough to get that far.

Before the alcohol induced chundering takes place, the mistletoe is likely to cause mischief.

There’s always that one drunk, standing by the mistletoe, waiting for his prey. The prey usually being someone’s wife or girlfriend.

When he steals his moment he’ll launch a full-on attack, sucking face and playing tonsil-tennis.

Until boyfriend or husband sees him and knocks his block off, smacks him in the chops, punches his lights out, gives him a twatting, or knocks seven shades of shit out of him.

In the worst eventuality, at least for the one concerned, the dirty old perv will end up brown bread.

Read Full Post »

He’s A Bummer

Bummer has many definitions, most of which I’m sure you’re aware.

But we’re not bothered with the conventional meanings are we?

No. Good.

A bummer, and this is a definition peculiar to the English Midlands – unless someone proves me wrong – is somebody who performs anal sex, either heterosexually or homosexually; the giver rather than the receiver.

Obviously, it’s quite derogatory in the latter case. The purpose of this post is not to educate you in derogatory slang and colloquiallisms but rather to make you aware of them, should you ever travel.

It comes from the British slang noun, Bum, which means ‘The Buttocks.’

Being called a name and not knowing what it means can lead to all kinds of trouble. Especially if you think it’s a nice word when it’s not friendly at all, in which cases a trip to the fractures clinic may be in order.

Read Full Post »

Up North we don’t say you, you’re or you have.

Why? Mostly because we’re plebs.

Has tha seen what thaz done?

If tha dunt watch theesen thaz gunner gerra smack in t’chops.
If you don’t watch yourself you’re going to get a punch in the mouth.

A classic example of this usage is the traditional Yorkshire song, On Ilkley Moor Baht’at which you can find here.

And no, we’re not all interbred up here…just some of us.

Read Full Post »