Tuesday, 5 January 2016

Guest post: Susanna Olsen

Susanna from Miss Adventure has kindly agreed to join me today. (And you should all go visit her blog and leave lots of comments because her blog is amazing and so is she.)

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When I arrived in the UK three months ago, I was quite surprised by the  extent of differences in word choice. From the the names of vegetables to letters in the alphabet... so many words were unexpectedly different from American English. Being made fun of for my Americanisms was fun for a while. I debated whether I should hold tight to my old ways or embrace British English full on. After some time to consider (and more than a wee bit of persecution for my pronunciation of aluminum foil...), I've decided to embrace this new way of speaking. I don't want to fake a British accent. But I have become more willing to drop my American phrases for their British counterparts. Since making that decision I have enjoyed quite a few new favourite phrases and words. Seriously though, now I don't know how I'd live without them.
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Mate

Just a jovial and informal way of saying friend.
Dodgy

Basically I really fun way of saying 'sketchy'. Go ahead, say it five times fast, you know you want to.
Cheers
Cheers-Gatsby
This word is not limited to the end of toasts at fancy dinner parties. In the UK, they use it to tell strangers thank you or show appreciation. If you make room for someone on the sidewalk*er*pavement or give someone a tissue etc... they will probably respond with “cheers”.
Squidgy
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Soft and gushy, like a really moist chocolate cake.
Fancy
Is a great word of determining how your friends feel about something.
"Do you fancy getting a chocolate milk this afternoon?"
"If you fancy, we can walk to the park instead."
Rubbish
Why say trash when you can say rubbish? I mean seriously, it is just so much more fun to say.
Brilliant
According to Urban Dictionary, it is a British term to used to describe everything. Also, it is a generally acceptable as an intensifier.
"That's brilliant."
"It was brilliant fun.'
Peckish
Slightly hungry. I don't think there is really a perfect American translation.
Cheerio
When I first arrived, one of my British friend was quick to point out that Americans always think that British people are always saying goodbye with 'cheerio'. She said she thinks that is really quite hilarious because she never uses that word. However, I've noticed that she tends to use it as a comeback if someone compliments her.
"That coat looks really nice on you!"
"Oh. Cheerio!"
Isn't that lovely?
So you see, since arriving in the UK my vocabulary has become ever so much more fun. Now if I can just stop embarrassing myself by saying pants instead of trousers and remember that a sidewalk is called pavement, perhaps I'll be able to truly start to fit in here without being made fun of for my Americanisms too much.
What are your favorite British expressions?

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Thank you Susanna! Make sure you check out her blog!

7 comments:

  1. Is there an address or link for the blog? Nice post, Susanna!

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    1. Yeah, sorry, that slipped between the cracks. I've updated it now, sorry about that!

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  2. Awww, this post is great! I actually use a lot of these because I picked up a fair bit of British diction in Africa. In our international group, Americans were the minority, and people from the UK were in the majority. So it was a similar experience to yours, Susanna, where I would get teased for my Americanisms until I dropped them. :)

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    1. Hahahaha, that's hilarious! But be proud of your Americanisms, Liz :) !

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    2. Hahaha Liz, I know exactly where you are coming from.

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  3. Ah yes - it's always fun learning new words, and when to use them! We use most of those words in Australia too, actually. :)

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    1. New words are so much fun, aren't they? And yes, I noticed that a lot of British and Australian words and similar, which is pretty cool. Thanks for commenting!

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