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Thread: Being British XIII

  1. #91
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    - Do you really say ‘jolly good show?’ I heard it in several movies and couldn't help but wonder.

    No. It's an old phrase and nobody really says it now, except jokingly.

    - What are popular brands of tea?

    Tetley, Typhoo, Yorkshire Tea, PG Tips and Twinings are the ones that spring to mind right now. But there are loads more, and each supermarket will usually have their own brand, which is usually cheaper.

    - Is it true that you have a permit to drive a car into London?

    Do you mean the Congestion Charge? That's only in certain parts of London, mainly the centre of it. I don't know if you can pre-pay it in advance, or have to buy it each time you make the trip. You can pay for it in local shops, or over the phone (I got this knowledge from Top Gear; I'm assuming it's right!)

    - What kind of cars do you all have?

    They are generally smaller than in America. Younger people tend to have smaller cars, as well. Most people in my sixth form had first cars like Vauhaull Corsas, Purgeot 106s, VW Polos, Minis, Fiat Puntos etc. The type cars that people Carole was on about are typically known as 'Chelsea Tractors'.

    - Do most people ride bikes or drive cars or do they average?

    I'd say most people drive.

    - What is treacle? What’s in it?

    It's very sugary! Its like a type of syrup thingy, also known as golden syrup, which is the paler version, and dark or black treacle. The dark stuff has a stronger flavour and is slightly bitter, but golden syrup is used in treacle tart. It's delicious!

    - What is shepard’s pie? What’s in it?

    Carole's already covered this, but I have to add that where I'm from (don't know if this is the same everywhere), it's called Shepherd's pie regardless of whether the meat is lamb or beef.

    - What are kippers?

    I wouldn't actually say they're that posh. I know people who eat kippers for breakfast. You can get them pre-packed now, and my housemate from the Isle of Man brings them over to have for her breakfast.

    Sarah x


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  2. #92
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    What is shepard’s pie? What’s in it?

    My mom makes shepard's pie with turkey after Christmas...but then it's still like the same thing, turkey, gravey, my mom puts corn in it often, with mashed potatos on top. My mom then grates mozza cheese on top, but I think that the cheese thing is just her
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  3. #93
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    I 'aven't the foggiest

    Do Brits actually say "I haven't the foggiest" all the time? Over here in Aus, it's the stereotype thing to say when you're faking an English accent (except we never pronouce H's when attempting English accents, and I'm not sure why.)

    I was watching some movie the other day, and a group of Americans were invading Buckingham Palace (as you do). Anyway, they'd turned off the security system and one guard said 'what happened to the security system?' and the other replied 'I 'aven't the foggiest.' I don't know whether they were just using the stereotype line as a joke, or if people actually say it. I'm pretty sure it's short for 'I haven't the foggiest idea' or something along those lines, yeah?

    ~Annie

  4. #94
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    *drooling while thinking of treacle tart* Wow, y'alls food sounds amazing, I'm definitely going to have to try treacle tart some day. I have another question on cars. I know you said that you have smaller cars over there but what about back in the seventies and eighties? Cars weren't exactly small then or at least they weren't in America. Was it different over there?


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  5. #95
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    Midnight Storm: Do Brits actually say "I haven't the foggiest" all the time?

    Well, strictly speaking, we don't say it all the time. But we do say it. It's not too common but it's definitely a British phrase.

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  6. #96
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    eyeofthetiger - Cars were smaller in UK in 70's and 80's. Although my dad drove a Cortina which could take 4 kids in the back, it was four kids who sat on laps, with no seat belts or car seats.

    Regulations in the 90's and 00's concerning seat belts and the number of people you could legally carry have meant that cars have to be bigger if you have a family that has more than one kid.

    Midnight Storm - I use 'I haven't the foggiest' but it is quite tongue in cheek. I think it's peculiarly British because we have so much fog in this country.

    ~Carole~
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  7. #97
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    I’m a bit late with all of these, but:

    Quote Originally Posted by Karaley Dargen
    Once again, a question!

    How would a family with two children (middle class) have gone about finding a house in the 60s? My thought is that the dad gets promoted/a new job, so they move house to get to the new job.

    Would they hire someone to find a place? Was that sort of job even around back then?
    Until the mid-seventies there were dozens of Estate Agents in most towns (I think you call them Real Estate Agents or Realtors, but I’m not certain). Most were taken over by large national chains (and Building Societies) in Mrs Thatcher’s Britain. If you’re selling a house you place it with an Estate Agent, who markets it for you. If you’re buying, you visit every estate agent you can. Middle class folks will try to buy, not rent. Renting = council housing = poor people (or it did then, anyway).

    Quote Originally Posted by eyeofthetiger
    In my story, two of the wizarding careers I'm going to talk about are Aurors and Hit Wizards. I know Hit Wizards are the muggle equivelent of police officers and that Aurors are the muggle equivelent of special agents. In America, special agents basically thought of like the FBI (Federal Bureau of Investigation), but what does it mean in Britain/ England? And also, do you all call your police officers anything other than cops/ police officers?
    I don’t think that there are strict equivalents between the Muggle and magical world. Aurors are Dark Wizard catchers and whether Hit Wizards are the only “ordinary” law officers is unclear.

    UK Police forces are all territorial. The Metropolitan Police cover London, the four forces closest to me are Northumbria Police, Durham Constabulary, Cumbria Constabulary and Lothian & Borders Police. Crossing boundaries isn’t an issue for most forces (as others have said – they co-operate, they also have certain powers of arrest elsewhere in the country) England and Wales share a legal system. Lothian and Borders, however, are in Scotland and the Scottish legal system is different. Even so, they co-operate.

    There is no “FBI” like organisation. Mainly because the UK is only three states “England and Wales”, “Scotland” and “Northern Ireland”.

    MI6 deals with foreign threats and is equivalent to the CIA. Fictional MI6 agents include James (007) Bond and George Smiley. Most Agents are probably more like Smiley (overweight and deskbound) than Bond.
    MI5 deals with internal security, keeping an eye on the Great British public (It has little resemblance to the tv show Spooks).

    Rozzers is a northern/north western term.


    Quote Originally Posted by eyeofthetiger
    Hey, I'm back yet again! You may think that some of these questions are pretty basic but I know next to nothing on England/ British-ism.

    - What are popular brands of tea?
    - Do most people ride bikes or drive cars or do they average?
    - Was American music popular over there in the 70’s & 80’s?
    - What are kippers?[/B]
    Tea is remarkably regional (personally I hate PG Tips). Go to Yorkshire and you’ll probably be offered tea from Taylors of Harrogate. Twinings (though national) were a North-East company (based in Newcastle upon Tyne). There was uproar (locally) when Twinings moved production of Earl Grey tea to Poland (there is a monument to Earl Grey in Newcastle City Centre).
    I drink Ringtons Tea (another Newcastle company). They deliver tea to my door.
    Cycling is more common in some parts of the UK than others, but not many people cycle to work. Basically, large University cities like Oxford and Cambridge have a lot of cyclists, and so do many the flatter parts of the country. The more hilly areas, the more difficult cycling is, and the fewer you’ll see. You didn’t mention Public Transport. Most Large Cities have limited (and expensive) parking facilities and many people commute by bus, train, tram, or underground railway. Most cities have several public transport systems. Buses are everywhere in the urban areas and most cities also have “the Tube” or “the Metro” or “the Supertram”. Rural areas are less well served by public transport.
    The mid to late seventies was the punk explosion, and bands like Blondie and the Ramones got big in the UK, but then we had the Pistols and the Clash and the Damned and Elvis Costello. But, really, I’m not sure what you mean by “American music” some bands were big over here, some bigger than they were in the States, others, no. Punk and Rock travel, Country and Western (generally) doesn’t.
    Kippers are whole herring, split and smoked (has anyone said that?).

    Neil

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  8. #98
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    Can anyone enlighten me on what kinds of weather would be likely on Sept first for the ride back to school? Is it warm? Likely to rain? Anything's possible?

    Thanks!
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  9. #99
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    To be honest, anything's possible. It would probably be no colder than 14/ 15 Celsius but it could be sunny or rainy or cloudy. I'm sorry for the short answer but it's true.
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  10. #100
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    Lori - although you can expect any type of weather, my kids have generally been returning to school in September wearing their summer clothes. That's London which is, of course, where King's Cross is. It's quite likely that the weather in Scotland would be colder and wetter.

    If you want it to be colder then suggest that autumn had come early.

    ~Carole~
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