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BS: English To English Dictionary

Jerry Rasmussen 25 Nov 03 - 12:57 PM
Schantieman 25 Nov 03 - 01:09 PM
Peace 25 Nov 03 - 01:23 PM
Les from Hull 25 Nov 03 - 01:27 PM
wysiwyg 25 Nov 03 - 01:27 PM
TheBigPinkLad 25 Nov 03 - 01:36 PM
Jerry Rasmussen 25 Nov 03 - 01:40 PM
TheBigPinkLad 25 Nov 03 - 01:43 PM
Amos 25 Nov 03 - 01:52 PM
GUEST,MMario 25 Nov 03 - 01:54 PM
Stilly River Sage 25 Nov 03 - 01:54 PM
GUEST,pdq 25 Nov 03 - 01:59 PM
GUEST,MMario 25 Nov 03 - 02:01 PM
Jerry Rasmussen 25 Nov 03 - 02:13 PM
Cluin 25 Nov 03 - 02:20 PM
GUEST,MMario 25 Nov 03 - 02:27 PM
GUEST 25 Nov 03 - 02:29 PM
GUEST 25 Nov 03 - 02:51 PM
Amos 25 Nov 03 - 04:38 PM
Richard Bridge 25 Nov 03 - 05:21 PM
Richard Bridge 25 Nov 03 - 05:24 PM
Jerry Rasmussen 25 Nov 03 - 05:26 PM
Emma B 25 Nov 03 - 06:08 PM
Les from Hull 25 Nov 03 - 06:08 PM
Micca 25 Nov 03 - 06:53 PM
Amos 25 Nov 03 - 07:05 PM
Ebbie 25 Nov 03 - 07:08 PM
Amos 25 Nov 03 - 07:11 PM
Bee-dubya-ell 25 Nov 03 - 07:30 PM
Snuffy 25 Nov 03 - 07:39 PM
Midchuck 25 Nov 03 - 10:27 PM
Bill D 25 Nov 03 - 11:25 PM
Cluin 25 Nov 03 - 11:44 PM
Amos 25 Nov 03 - 11:46 PM
Cluin 26 Nov 03 - 12:11 AM
Coyote Breath 26 Nov 03 - 01:09 AM
LadyJean 26 Nov 03 - 01:21 AM
HuwG 26 Nov 03 - 02:12 AM
The Fooles Troupe 26 Nov 03 - 02:13 AM
Hrothgar 26 Nov 03 - 03:46 AM
The Fooles Troupe 26 Nov 03 - 04:12 AM
Jeanie 26 Nov 03 - 04:20 AM
Steve Parkes 26 Nov 03 - 04:30 AM
Gurney 26 Nov 03 - 05:01 AM
Steve Parkes 26 Nov 03 - 05:22 AM
Jerry Rasmussen 26 Nov 03 - 08:08 AM
Cluin 26 Nov 03 - 08:20 AM
jacqui.c 26 Nov 03 - 08:35 AM
Steve Parkes 26 Nov 03 - 11:40 AM
Merritt 26 Nov 03 - 12:19 PM
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Subject: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Jerry Rasmussen
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 12:57 PM

Now, don't get your knickers in a twist. In America, that would mean something quite different than in England. Same word, different meaning. Knickers over here were what I wore as a kid... they only came in corduroy, and were outer pants that went down to about the knee with an elastic band at the bottom. Corduroy knickers in England would not only be uncomfortable and bulky... they'd be downright kinky.

Now, I hear that cavorting on the davenport, while a delightful passtime over here, would be rather acrobatic and even dangerous in England. Over here, a davenport is a couch is a divan (or a studio couch) while it is a small, slant-topped table in England. Ouch!

Words come in and out of fashion in both countries, and they often date us. Sometimes, they cause confusion and misunderstanding, or more often, just quizzical looks.

The Opry over here is the Grand Old Opry, not the Opera, with "opera glasses" Opry glasses are usually filled with Miller.

Then, there are brand names like Marmite (which I thought was a small, weasel-like animal at first) or Frigidaire, over here. When I was a kid, all refrigerators were Frigidaires, because it was such a popular brand name. Same with Kleenex... I didn't hear the term facial tissue until I was in High School (which was probably something else in England. Isn't Gymnasium a term for lower Elementary School in England? Or is it Germany?

Life used to be simpler. If you had a cold, you took an aspirin (not a tylenol or an Excedrin or all the other pain killers) kept a box of Kleenex at your side, and if you wanted to drink cold liquids, you went to the "fridge." Peanut Butter was either Skippy or Peter Pan.

And God help you if you go to another English-speaking country. Better bring your English to English Dictionary.

Got any other words that passed in favor, or mean radically different things in different countries? Or don't mean anything, as far as you're concerned?

Leave a note on the chiffarobe, or the credenza, or the day bed..

Jerry-mander


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Schantieman
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 01:09 PM

Well, there's Durex, which I believe is Australian for Sellotape. Bloody painful, I should think, and nowhere near as effective.

And vacuum cleaners are generally called Hoovers over here - probably because they never dam' well work properly.

I'll get my coat.

Steve


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Peace
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 01:23 PM

Billy boots
Gum boots
Rubber boots


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Les from Hull
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 01:27 PM

Brucie - don't you mean wellies? (in the UK they are Wellington boots, or wellies).


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: wysiwyg
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 01:27 PM

Past threads on This Topic = Old Craic?

~S~


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: TheBigPinkLad
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 01:36 PM

Sellotape = Scotch tape


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Jerry Rasmussen
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 01:40 PM

And Scotch tape is a brand name, just like Kleenex, even though all brands of clear adhesive tape are called "Scotch" tape..

Jerry


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: TheBigPinkLad
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 01:43 PM

Pissed = Angry (US)
Pissed = Drunk (UK)


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Amos
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 01:52 PM

Hoods and bonnets, chicks and birds,
Quite the mess, these English words!
Leaves us gaping, old or young,
Divided by a common tongue.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: GUEST,MMario
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 01:54 PM

pissed = either angry *OR* drunk - at least where I grew up in the states.


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 01:54 PM

Stuffed = eat too much (US--particularly applicable to this week's Thanksgiving holiday)

I hear it means something a bit different in the UK :)


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: GUEST,pdq
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 01:59 PM

From recent threads:

porked (US) = shagged (UK)
whole step (US) = whole tone (UK)
half step (US) = semi-tone (UK)

And you could write a book about car parts!

bonnet (UK) = hood, etc...


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: GUEST,MMario
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 02:01 PM

SRS - re: stuffed

again had a *distinctly* different connotation (in ADDITION to the common) where I grew up.

Sometimes TONE changes meaning...


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Jerry Rasmussen
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 02:13 PM

When my wife and I went to take Colin (ColK) to the airport when he was flying back to England, I said that I'd put his suitcase in the trunk of the car. That's another foreign English word to him. If I remember correctly, you Brits call the "trunk" of the car the "boot?"

Jerry


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Cluin
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 02:20 PM

Then there's that whole pants vs. trousers potential embarrassment for North American visitors to the British Isles.

Pants = Trousers (North America)

Pants = Underpants (Britain)

Shorts = Short Trousers (Britain)

Shorts = Underpants or Short Trousers (North America)


And "bum", as an anatomical part, is considered a rude word over there.


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: GUEST,MMario
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 02:27 PM

"bum" is rude WHICH "over there"?


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: GUEST
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 02:29 PM

More car parts:

gudgeon pin (UK) = wrist pin (US)
propeller shaft (UK) = drive shaft (US)
cam follower (UK)(not to be confused with cathode follower) = valve lifter
petrol (UK) = gasoline (US)
saloon (UK) = sedan (US) : This one could really cause problems!


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: GUEST
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 02:51 PM

In canada there is a mixture of these terms.. I wear wellies, say arse not ass, a vacuum cleaner is a hoover, a tie is a slepper, and so on. Guess it just depends on where you come from but a vest is still an undershirt and wankers are the same all over.


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Amos
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 04:38 PM

We don't have wankers in the U.S. We believe in the inherent dignity of the individual and a couple of other forgotten things...I forget what they are, but they are very important...but basically we have a wanker-free nation throughout the 50 states, excluding the District of Columbia...


A


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 05:21 PM

A packet of fags = 20 cigarettes (UK)


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 05:24 PM

Oh, I nearly forgot.

Fanny = Backside, usually female (US)
Fanny = Female pudendum (UK)


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Jerry Rasmussen
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 05:26 PM

And now I know that a bathroom (or a "can", or the "head" over here) is a loo in England.

I finally understand what the song Skip to my Loo is all about...

And over here, why do women refer to the bathrooms as "The Little Ladies room" or the "Little Boys Room?" As in, "I'll be right back; I have to go visit the Little Ladies Room." Visit? Of course... it's a necessary place to visit but no one would want to live there..

Jerry


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Emma B
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 06:08 PM

I shared an office with an American colleague for a couple of years. We had the usual "misunderstandings" over requesting to borrow his rubber etc but I was completely taken aback at being asked to purchase a sample bottle for another colleagues birthday.


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Les from Hull
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 06:08 PM

Pissed off = angry
Pissed up = drunk (a piss-up is an opportunity to drink heavily)

So you can see where that comes from.

On the subject of car parts we have 'bonnet' for what in the USA is I believe the 'hood'. Now isn't that just cute and British?

I suppose that in the British Isles and other places where English is spoken we understand more of the Americanisms because of our contact with US films, TV and books. Anyway it's time for me to roll a fag (which is commonspeak here for making a cigarette).


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Micca
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 06:53 PM

Vest= Undershirt(UK)
Vest= Waistcoat (US)
Suspenders= Garter belt (UK)
Suspenders=Braces(US)


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Amos
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 07:05 PM

While over here it is a highly frowned upon abuse against those of differing sexual persuasions....

A


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Ebbie
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 07:08 PM

Aspirin, itself, was once a trade name for acetylsalicylic acid. Companies are far more alert for infringements on trademarks than they used to be, I believe. As mentioned above, Frigidaire, Kleenex, Scotch tape, Hoover, Xerox, Jello and many, many more have become generic names for specific products, and it's common to hear people saying 'Our xerox is a Pitney-Bowes'. Or, 'Pick up some kleenex at the store, but don't get the expensive brand'. Companies that have successfully insinuated their product with great effort and expense into our culture are not happy about the takeover.


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Amos
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 07:11 PM

IMHO it would take a fool to object to his brand becoming a generic and widely known noun such as Xerox. Sure you lose some sales to brand confusions, but you probably garner many more because of the implicit "genuineness" of your product. Why fight that?

A


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Bee-dubya-ell
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 07:30 PM

Oh, goody! Maybe someone from the UK can explain one of the ways in which the word "surgery" is used over there. In the US "surgery" usually means a medical procedure. Occasionally it may mean the place where the procedure takes place (though "operating room" or just "doctor's office" are much more common).

I once read a book written by a British author in which "surgery" was used in a non-medical sense. It seemed to mean something like "office hours" during which elected officials meet with constituents. Is it just a matter of "surgery" meaning "doctor's office" getting applied to the offices of other professionals as well as doctors?

Bruce


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Snuffy
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 07:39 PM

UK community doctors operate from "surgeries". Politicians also run "surgeries" where you go and tell them what's wrong, just like at the Doctor's


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Midchuck
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 10:27 PM

Pharmacist (US) = Chemist (UK)

Internal pickup in acoustic guitar (US) = bug (UK)

"Bloody" in US simply means someone or something has blood on it. In UK it appears to be one of the nastiest dirty words - for no reason I can see - i. e., calling someone a "bloody idiot" in UK is as bad as, or worse than, calling him a "goddam f***ing idiot" in US. (Of course, I always supposed that if I must be an idiot, I'd rather be a f***ing idiot than a non-f***ing idiot, but I digress.)

Peter.


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Bill D
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 11:25 PM

Hoover? but what if your Hoover is an Electrolux? or Kirby? or Miehle?

Hoover is a brand name....(and is the verb form "hoove"?) *grin*...

when analyzed, some UK terms make more sense (petrol, for one..not 'gas', which means several other things) and some US terms make more sense (panties(a diminutive generic)for ladies brief undies, rather than 'knickers', which has roots in a family name Knickerbocker) ..but folks aren't really interested in making sense, are they? They would rather just speak, eat and dress as they learned as a child. Yes...me, too ..it's hard to break out of the mould.


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Cluin
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 11:44 PM

My Dad told me how a neighbour's mother was over visiting from England and requested that on his way out to work the next morning, he "Come by and knock me up, love..."

But being Canadian, he knew what she really meant. But then again....


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Amos
Date: 25 Nov 03 - 11:46 PM

The boys in Wyoming roll fags, while the lads in Bristol go out Paki-bashing. Eh?

A


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Cluin
Date: 26 Nov 03 - 12:11 AM

chad = (US) some evil sort of obfuscating ballot thingy used to confuse the results in an election, thereby allowing the governor of the offending state to keep playing now-you-see-it-now-you-don't with the votes until the duly appointed-by-another-relative's beaurocrats can step in and hand the top office of the nation over to yet another relative while the general populace stands by wondering what the fuck just happened

chad = (Canada) a term denoting a thing or state of affairs which is really supremely excellently cool and choice...
"Did you see Steve's new bike? With the black suede banana seat, extra high sissy bar, butterfly handlebars and really small front tire? It's soooooooo chad, man!"


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Coyote Breath
Date: 26 Nov 03 - 01:09 AM

Clew, lift, pram, lorry, hire car, motorbike, mould, bangers, and dirty dick, and...

I love English as she is spoke by the British. Usually I have absolutely no trouble understanding what is being said because of the context within which it is being used. So when someone is pushing a pram I know almost instinctively that:

It's a Monty Python sketch!!

Our PBS local is really a BBC outlet.

Most "Englishisms" make perfect sense, pram - perambulator. Still I question SOME words. aluminum is NOT spelled al-u-minium and it is missle NOT mis-sile.

But, then, the poor dears over the pond have a Queen and while I'm sure she is a lovely person, she certainly doesn't know how to dress.

CB (irreverent as usual)


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: LadyJean
Date: 26 Nov 03 - 01:21 AM

Our school uniform was a baggy, sleeveless outer garment with a yoke neck, and box pleats. There was a small breast pocket with the school crest on it.
It was worn over a white blouse, belted, with knee socks and loafers or oxfords. In the U.S., the unlovely garment we wore is called a jumper.
I know English girls wore them too. The Belles of St. Trinnians dressed just like us, except they wore ties. (And our headmistress didn't look at all like Alistair Simms.) But I don't know what they were called, because in England a jumper is a sweater, not a dress.

I found a uniform from our old school at a rummage sale. I sent it to my sister for her birthday. I'm looking forward to her response.


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: HuwG
Date: 26 Nov 03 - 02:12 AM

A tale floated my way once of a journalist who was caught up in a coup somewhere in Africa; it may have been Idi Amin's takeover of Uganda. For a few weeks after the coup, scowling troops stopped all vehicles on the main roads, ordered the drivers and passengers out, then made them take off their hats and shoes. They examined them without saying why and handed them back to their owners. Eventually, the hack summoned up the courage to ask them why they were performing this odd procedure. The Corporal in charge said, "We got written orders from HQ. We got to stop all cars and check all bonnets and boots".


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 26 Nov 03 - 02:13 AM

There were some Americans over for EXPO 88 - in 1988 - and I was walking with a lady who saw a stuffed Dingo in a window display.

She: Is that dingo stuffed?

Me: He don't look too well.


Robin


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Hrothgar
Date: 26 Nov 03 - 03:46 AM

Knocked up - exhausted (Australia, possibly UK?)
Knocked up - pregnant (US)


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 26 Nov 03 - 04:12 AM

I remember hearing "Knocked Up" in the 1960's or 70's as an Australian expression meaning pregnant.

Robin


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Jeanie
Date: 26 Nov 03 - 04:20 AM

LadyJean - the "jumper" you wore as your school uniform was called a "gym slip" over here in the UK. I wore one, too, in a lovely shade of cabbagey green (plus blouse, tie, blazer with braid in house colours, hat with tassel on the back if you were a prefect, etc. etc.) Unlike your school in the US, though, our headmistress most definitely *did* look like Alastair Sim !!

- jeanie


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Steve Parkes
Date: 26 Nov 03 - 04:30 AM

I found a book at a car boot sale, on English English for Americans, i.e. if you're from the US, how to make yourself understood and avoid embarrasment in the UK. Written by an ex-pat Yank lady,it includes a big glossary, much of which was sent her by correspondents from all over the British Isles. It includes quite a few words and expressions I've never heard of, and I think one or two of her "pals" may have played a joke on her.

I'll try and find it out tonight.

Steve


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Gurney
Date: 26 Nov 03 - 05:01 AM

More car parts.

Wing = Fender
Windsceen = Windshield
Backlight = Rear windshield (LAMPS produce light, lights let it in)
Tyre = Tire
Gearstick = Shifter

Ever part of a car has it's specific name, and not many are common, from my reading of American Mags


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Steve Parkes
Date: 26 Nov 03 - 05:22 AM

I thought "bumper"="fender"? And "gearstick" is what I call "gear lever" (and "lever" rhymes with "beaver"!)
Engine=motor
Main beam=high beam
Carburettor=carburator (or carburater?)

What do you US-ers call: radiator (and grill), dipped headlights, door pillars, dipstick, head gasket, cylinder head, gearbox, con[necting]-rod, camshaft, timing chain, fuel injection, spare wheel, accelerator (assuming the correct technical name is not "gas pedal"), demister ... anything else?

Steve


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Jerry Rasmussen
Date: 26 Nov 03 - 08:08 AM

A car "boot" over here is a security item you attach to your steering whell which locks it in place so nobody can steal it. There is also a device called a "boot" that parking lots threatened to use if you parked illegally, which locked the wheel of your car so it wouldn't turn.

And when they sing, "Shake Your Booty" as they did in disco days, they wasn't talking about shaking your trunk. It's lower down in the anatomy.. Did they really sing "Shake your bum?" in Australier?

Jerry


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Cluin
Date: 26 Nov 03 - 08:20 AM

radiator = often shortened to rad.

dipped headlights = low beams (also running lights)

full headlights = hi beams

gearbox = transmission or tranny

demister = defogger (or defroster in Canada)

spare wheel = spare tire or spare

connecting rod = piston rod

Everything else is pretty much the same.


What do you call "wipers" and "pissers"?


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: jacqui.c
Date: 26 Nov 03 - 08:35 AM

Bloody isn't really that bad a swear word and gets used quite regularly in English conversations - at leat in the circles I travel in. It's actually quite mild in comparison to some of the more high powered words, although I suppose, as with any expletive, it's the emphasis with which a word is pronounced that adds to its efficacy. i can't think of many people who would be shocked by the use of bloody - which, I believe, is a shortening of 'by our lady'.

I think that the word gap is narrowing with the spread of films and TV programmes, particularly from the States. sooner or later we'll probably all end up talking the same language, but will it be Chinese or Spanish?


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Steve Parkes
Date: 26 Nov 03 - 11:40 AM

No, Jacqui, "bloody" is like "lousy": it acquired its expletive value as an extension of its literal meaning. Swift used it in a letter to Vanessa (which I can't find; but here's an example in a poem of his -- use search to find it). This suggests it was a "respectable" expletive in those days and suitable for use by "nice" people, but later became disreputable by its increasing use by the hoi-polloi. (Probably!)

Shame -- the "by Our Lady" story is a good one!

Steve


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Subject: RE: BS: English To English Dictionary
From: Merritt
Date: 26 Nov 03 - 12:19 PM

Re "shake your booty"..and then there was Frank Zappa's late-70s album "Sheik Yerbouti"

- Merritt


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