01 June 2006

Irksome Phrases

When I showed The Spitfire my ticket for the steamboat and weepingly told her I had to skip town one step ahead of the posse, all she exclaimed was,

"Dad - that is like so-o-o cool.

You'll be able to talk and they won't keep saying you sound like an English Major."

Hmm, up to a point, Lord Copper.

oldies world cup coverAs I perch regally in my reserved spot in the taverna, all around me noisome youths gearing (and beering) up for some sort of soccer competition, I scan the latest issue of The Oldie, last bastion of literacy and wit on the periodicals shelf.

Incidentally, what a relief to have fled a youth-obsessed culture and actually be able to read the saintèd pamphlet in public, instead of having to nestle it in the pages of The Review.

Seriously, to pass oneself off in the US of A as a regular guy, and then be caught with a mag with the title of "The Oldie" ... one might as well be nabbed perusing 'Paedophile Monthly' or 'The Celice Clarion' [incorporating 'Hair shirt Quarterly'].

Massively annoying modern phrases: So much for taking refuge in the land of Milton and Shakespeare. The Führerene probably pictures me in witty banter with fellow fops, our genial chatter peppered with Prithees and Forsooths and many a By Your Leave ("No, by Yours" ; "No no, I insist")

Well, duude - guess what Nick Parker came up with when the Oldie canvassed readers to "ask you guys to give us a heads up on the modern phrases that are, like, massively annoying to yourselves":

irksome phrases2So much for my  Canute-like railings against the hosts of Midian. Here's a selection of what bugs the Brits:

Top Five

  1. 'Have nice day'
  2. 'Your call is important to us'
  3. 'No probs!'
  4. 'Chill out' (Curses! I was rather fond of that one)
  5. 'Bear with us'

Telephone tirades

  • 'Please hold the line. Your call is important to us.'
  • 'Your call may be monitored for training/security purposes'

    Railway rants

  • 'Warning: professional pickpockets operate in this area'
  • 'Your on-train team'
  • 'The next station stop will be Carlisle'

    Retail rages

  • 'Clinically-proven' (by our own marketing dept)
  • 'Up for grabs'

    Dumbing downers

  • 'The run-up to Christmas'. Comment: previously known as 'Advent'.

    Well, no danger of that gaffe ensnaring them across the Pond of Correctitude. The C-word is struck from their calendar and the tongue cut out of any blasphemer who even mentions it during the run-up to the sacred festival of Hallmar'KwanZAA.

  • Pre-booking (What other kind of booking is there?)


  • Enjoy!
  • Whatever!
  • I'm so not!
  • Dude.

    What? No 'Dude'? Dammit, it forms the very bulwark of my chatter. That is like so unfair. Verily, I use it daily in the Gouvia market and the tourists fall to their knees at my command and grandeur of language.

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