Thursday, April 17, 2008

Two nations divided...

It was GB Shaw that said that the US and the UK are
Two nations divided by a common language

I've been thinking about this as I enjoy blogs by writers from the US. It's often in the everyday things that we show our differences. Now, I would call top object a purse and the lower one a handbag. I believe that my American friends would call the large black object a purse and the small colourful one a wallet. I suppose it doesn't matter, until one of us talks about a "purse" without giving enough context. I'm pretty sure I couldn't get my mobile phone in my purse. Or should I say my cellphone won't fit in my wallet?

I've noticed that in the UK we tend to expect to find a bath in the bathroom - otherwise it's a toilet. We don't have restrooms but you can sometimes use the toilet in an old-fashioned cloakroom. Although many of our cloakrooms are just places to put coats.

It doesn't have to be confusing. We just need everyone to realise that the UK way is the simplest and best.


Bill C said...

But... but... what about the loo?

And how did the name 'loo' come about? Expiring US minds want to know.

fairyhedgehog said...

Anything to help expiring US minds ;)

There are a couple of theories about "loo" but my favourite is that it comes from the French "lieu" meaning place. That would make a nice euphemism, and in English I'm sure we'd pronounce it "loo".

Jessi said...

If it were only as simple as changing all our z's to s's like yours....


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