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Cock Of The Town

Reading a book about Lynyrd Skynyrd’s Ronnie Van Zant I came across the expression “tush hog” which described some of the people in Ronnie’s neighbourhood.

Apparently a tush hog is the kind of person who starts a fight for no other reason than that they wish to hurt someone, not for honour or valour, just because they want to inflict pain.

The author of the book doesn’t know the origin of “tush hog” but I bet it’s pretty interesting.

If anybody’d like to offer the origin or perhaps just bullshit as to what it might be, please go ahead.

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Moonlight Flit

So, we’ve completed the flit.
In northern England and Scotland, the word flit can mean ‘to move house.’

We’ve some strange dialect up here.

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In Trouble Again


Rocket and Spire
Originally uploaded by idleman.

My mum used to say she’d give me a rocket if I got in trouble.

Some people, when they’re angry, say they want to shove a rocket up someone’s arse.

Just as long as it’s not Stephenson’s Rocket. You’d need a big arse to get that up there.

So, what colourful punishments did your olds threaten you with?

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Direct Communication

There’s no point, if you’ll excuse the pun, beating around the bush.

Tell it how it is.

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From Ph to F

Most of my science textbooks were written by British authors yet the more recent ones have something nasty going off inside them.

The international scientific community has long used SI units to avoid confusion for those replicating experiments or analysing results. SI units are a language of their own.

But what’s bugging me is how the word sulphur is now being spelled sulfur…by British authors. This is because they have to fall in line with the international scientific community. And of course, we now have our sulfates.

Sulfate de cuiver

Kupfersulfat

Sulfato de cobre

Het koper sulfaat

Next, we’ll be spelling physics, fysics…or even…fizzix. Perhaps not.

Oh well, I suppose I lose this one. Sulfur and sulfate it is then.

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Fawlty Food


Ordering food abroad can be…confusing for all concerned.

In the classic sit-com Fawlty Towers, our inept host, Basil Fawlty, experiences some difficulty when an American guest orders food:

Mr Hamilton: Could you make me a Waldorf Salad?
Basil: Oh, … ah, … wa?
Mr Hamilton: Waldorf Salad?
Basil: I think we are just out of Waldorfs.

What ensued was embarrassment for Basil who, being the cultured man he is, had never heard of a Waldorf Salad and didn’t know how to make one.

And I have to confess, he wasn’t alone.

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Walking The Dog

Terrestrial TV, all five channels of it, is enough to make any man take the dog for a walk.

It’s so bad that even the guys updating the Now and Next text guide have gone to walk the dog; failing to update the schedule…Film 2006 has already started.

Come rain, snow or blow we are free to walk our dog. It’s long been man’s excuse to escape nagging housewives, mother-in-laws, and schizoid girlfriends: The dog needs walking.

And here, ladies and gentlemen, is our dog:


“But that’s not a dog,” I hear you cry. “It’s a bottle of Newcastle Brown Ale, you fool.”

Wrong.

Not only is it A dog…it is THE dog. And walking the dog is the best thing since the dog’s bollocks. …which brings me to a mini-lesson:

Bollocks = testicles. Why does a dog lick its bollocks? Because it can and that’s great. And, at the time of publishing, you won’t find that accurate a description of the origin of the phrase anywhere on the ‘net. Trust me on the meaning, I’m a farmer’s boy and I spent far too much time with animals as a child.

Many moons ago, Newcastle, in the northeast of England, was an area of heavy industry, mainly coal mining. The men up there worked long hours, doing hard and very dangerous jobs for very low wages.

It’s only natural for a man to want a beer or fifteen after a hard shift. The trouble being that the nagging woman wouldn’t want him spending that pitiful sum of money he’d slogged his guts out for; mouths to feed and all that.

But that didn’t stop our man, oh no!

He’d simply explain that he was taking the dog for a walk. The perfect excuse to get out of the house.

In those times disease was rife and the last thing you wanted was dog mess all over the house. Best let the man take his dog out.

The thing is, the man always took his wallet with him and walking the dog usually involved a pub, about a dozen beers, a game of darts, and possibly a brawl…and going home broke.

To this very day, even if people don’t own a dog, they often take one for a walk or at least go to see a man about a dog.

In pubs throughout the northeast of England if you ask for a bottle of dog, you’ll be presented with a bottle of Newcastle Brown Ale, the original dog.

Those Geordie boys know how to coin a phrase.

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