our Language: English or American?

american_vs_british_flagsThe Americans are identical to the British in all respects except, of course, language.”
Oscar Wilde
“We (the British and Americans) are two countries separated by a common language.”
G.B. Shaw

Those who know me are aware that I married an Englishman.  Yes, like your typical American woman, I was entranced by his lovely British accent.   And yes, there have been plenty of times his ‘lovely British accent’ has totally confused me… both the accent AND some of the words he used!  Words that are now commonplace around our home.    In an effort to illustrate some of the words and phrases that were once totally unknown to me, I’ll compose a paragraph or two of what might be a ‘typical’ conversation in our home. 

Me:  “Good morning sweetie, how did you sleep last night?  How ’bout a cuppa tay?  I’ll be mother”.   DH: “ta, the tay sounds good.  I was sure knackered yesterday”.   Looking out the window…   DH: “Looks pretty dark over Bill’s mother’s, doesn’t it?”  Me: “Yeah, I guess it does.  How’d you like some beans on toast with brown sauce for your brekky”?   DH: ” Hmmm, I am feeling a bit peckish, but I think I’ll give the beans a miss this morning”.   Me: “Well, what can I fix for ya that won’t get ya all stodged up”?  DH: “oh the tay and toast would be fine.  I want to make sure I fit in my togs later today”.  You know how I love to jump in at the end of the day and get the grott off”!  

Translation:  Me: “Good morning sweetie, how did you sleep last night?  Would you like a cup of tea?  I’ll pour it”.  DH: “Thanks, the tea sounds good.  I was sure worn out yesterday.”   Looking out the window…. DH: “It sure looks dark over on the other side of the lake, doesn’t it”?  Me:  “Yeah, I guess it does.  How’d you like some beans on toast with HP Sauce for breakfast”?  DH: “Well, I am feeling kinda hungry, but I think I’ll skip the beans this morning”.  Me:  “Well what can I fix that won’t make you feel all full and bloated”?  DH: “Oh, tea and toast will be fine.  I want to be sure and fit into my swim trunks later today.  You know how I love to jump into the hottub and rinse away the sweat and grime at the end of the day”! 

Ok, so we wouldn’t use ALL those words in one paragraph.  But, they WOULD come up during a day or two.  I used to wonder what “grott” and “togs” were… but no more.  I’ve adapted 🙂  But then, so has he!  He now uses phrases like “you’ve got a hitch in your gitalong!”  and “trailer trash” –  He calls this becoming “Americanized”.  Hmmmmm. 

Then there was the “crossword” incident.  DH loves to do crosswords, and even though I’m terrible at them, I try too.  One day we were doing a crossword.  He was working on it over at the kitchen counter and I was in the living room.  He yelled out… “was Jerry Meyer a prophet???”  I hollered back… “Jerry MEYER?  There is NO Jerry Meyer in the Bible!!”  He kept saying “you know Jerry Meyer… of course you do!!”  I kept denying the knowledge of Jerry.  Finally I went over to have a look at it.  Yes, he was trying to ask me about “Jeremiah”.  Good grief. 

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3 thoughts on “our Language: English or American?

  1. Hi Glenda! I guess you make a good point! That note was left by one of my dear sons and was written almost entirely in – well, I’m not sure what you’d call it – “chat language” or maybe “texting shortcuts”? Anyway it says: “Oh my God…. Laughing my a** off, rolling on the floor!!!”
    Guess he thought it was pretty funny 🙂

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