E-Z Brit-American Glossary & Kiwi A-Z

In order to be a true Earthling as opposed to a boring American, it is necessary to have a handle on the local patois wherever one travels. Just because you’ve seen Austin Powers movies a half dozen times doesn’t give you the right to try out for a speaking part at the Royal Academy of Dramatic Art…Shagging and Snogging are fun words, but there is so much more.

Since we’re in Edinburgh right now (Sept 13,  07 a day that will go down in mystery) we’ll start with Brit on the Quick, a concise guide to Sounding Less Awful for foreigners. For starters, be aware there are so many regional variations that to try to distinguish and be accurate to each region would be impossible. This 80 pence guide of one-by one-and-a-half inches, can make us ( the Ugly Americans) sound somehow more acclimatized.

Like naff (not in good taste). Lady Di coined “Naff off!’ because to be unfashionable was the cruelest insult

Faff : putter about trying to get ready

Gaff: place you live. Also see : Steading.

Bang on schedule. Bang means precisely.

Car park…means parking lot.

Barking mad= crazy

Box of Frogs=someone who’s really daft is ‘mad as a box of frogs’

Skive off work=shirk
skint= broke (fiscally)

have a go: try something

On the rivet…’red line’ something

Dodgy :Oh, you’ve seen that in Austin Powers
stonking I think I’ll leave that one to the pros (click on it)

Here it is: your one-page origami phrasebook

2 Responses to “E-Z Brit-American Glossary & Kiwi A-Z”

  1. Hi Mademoiselle,

    I could add about another thousand to this list, but I haven’t got time right now. Even the Brit-Yank cycling slang differences would take the rest of the morning, and thinking about it would threaten to drag me back so far into my cycling memories and experiences that it would almost be like writing a book. Maybe I should write a book, but that would be only one more to add to the already compendious pile of unwritten books sitting on my kitchen table as blank sheets of paper. And I’m supposed to be clearing off the piles because I’ve got a visitor coming next weekend!

  2. As Winston Churchill once stated (I’m paraphrasing here, folks!)
    “Britain and the United States…two great Nations seperated by a common language…”
    Just about sums it up I reckon!
    Love & Peace to all,
    Joe Poncho.

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