Strange charmed life reaction

Rowland, Jennifer A B jennifer.rowland at ic.ac.uk
Tue Apr 10 04:54:25 EDT 2001


>Jacob wrote,
>  >   Both
>>  British B words (I hesitate to name them because of so many of you are
in
>>  the UK), for example, are perfectly acceptable even in polite society
here
>>  and occasion little or no comment.  I watched Notting Hill the other day
and
>>  noticed that under British sensibility, the Hugh Grant character was
really
>
Ven:
>Whaddya mean both? We've got four that I can think of. They're all
>actually pretty much ok for polite society so long as its youngish in
>age or outlook ............................ The two you're probably missing
>are the aforementioned bugger, and bum -- here, childish or vulgar
>word for the buttocks. When I was a kid the US usage of bum
>made me think Americans were really rude.

Hallie:
|Now I'm really confused!  I couldn't think of two British B words 
|which were perfectly acceptable in the US to start off with, and now 
|that Ven's pointed out the two missing ones, I don't even know what 
|the two were, acceptable or otherwise.  Bloody obviously is one of 
|them - but what's the second/fourth?

<Puts hands over Becca and Cara's eyes> I'd assumed it was "bollocks",
although we do say "balls" too. It's quite interesting how many words for
male genitals there are that are only a bit rude, and can be used as a
friendly insult, whereas there are only a couple for female genitals and
they are *bad* words.
I'm trying to wean myself off really rude words as an everyday,
stubbed-my-toe sort of thing in order to save them for when it's really
necessary, like when Michael Portillo comes on the telly. I think "Arse!" a
la Father Jack or the Fast Show sketch is quite useful (it can be both noun
and verb, like f***).
Jennifer
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