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  • I gotta laugh. I've been reading a book called "Watching the English"written by an English anthropologist who decided it would be much more fun to study the English than go out in some nasty flea-infested woods to study the natives. She explains, for instance, the importance of not being earnest. And, now, I understand why I drive the English nuts (and plenty of others). Great guidebook for social interaction, insight into the English, and occasionally kinda funny. Not too earnest, usually.
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  • I've told you WW, you can be our guest, we have a spare room and we're quite unusual specimens. Just gotta email!
  • She explains, for instance, the importance of not being earnest.

    What? Is this an undiscovered Oscar Wilde play?
    The Moving Finger writes; and, having writ.
    Moves on: nor all thy Piety nor Wit.
    Shall lure it back to cancal half a line,
    Nor all thy Tears wash out a Word of it.
  • KatRobin said:

    I've told you WW, you can be our guest, we have a spare room and we're quite unusual specimens. Just gotta email!

    Do you like being watched in your sleep by someone with a clipboard? Science, you know.
  • It is wild. Pub protocols, the fact that the weather is the best ice-breaking conversation and, yet, no one seems to really pay attention to the forecast since so few carry an umbrella on seriously rainy days. Almost as entertaining and informative as "An Utterly Impartial History of Britain". But, then, I found my way to The Newsbiscuit.

    She doesn't mention verbosity, though.
  • Tin soldier- I don't sleep ! ( much, grrr).
    WW- have you read any of Bill Bryson's books? " Notes From A Small Island" is his take on the quirks of the British. They're always witty books.
  • I'll have to try it, Kat. I was just thinking of another comment from that book by Kate Fox and setting I had noticed myself on this site. It is very un-English to ... well, I can't find it but I'll call it The Importance of not Criticizing rule. That has fascinated me since 've been on this site. Oh, yeah, but it's just fine to talk behind that person's back.

    Let's see, a few others. Irony rules. The "oh, come off it" rule. The awkwardness rule. The embarrassment rule. The privacy rule. And yes self-denigration rule (I think she used a different word).

    Have you ever heard of the Shipping Forecast?

    It's funny in that I break a lot of these rules.
    Post edited by Whickwithy at 2017-05-07 02:56:43
  • If you're amused by the shipping forecast WW, you really don't get out much. But you might like to read The Adventures of Tin Tin too.
  • I think the shipping forecast is very quaint though I'm not sure of the impetus.
    Post edited by Whickwithy at 2017-05-07 07:36:52
  • So, I suggest that everyone put "irony" in parentheses after any ironic statements.
    Just kidding.
  • There were a couple of traits I noticed last ye I visited London.

    People don't tend to walk on the right or the left side of a sidewalk. They walk in the middle. Drove me crazy until I made sense of it. In London, there are so many foreigners that are used to walking on the right that you just don't know which way they will jump. Even more interesting is that, in the early morning it is mostly London's so they can peacably walk on the left while the tourist are sleeping. Of course, tons of people walking probably ha something to do with it, as well.
    The other interesting thing is I found a difference between north and south bank that just fascinates me. There are no trashcans, to speak of, on the North bank steets and, also, no cigarette butts in the street, to speak of. The south bank has trash cans everywhere and, also, butts everywhere.
  • I think you're looking into pavement etiquette a bit too much, Whickwithy.  I will admit I do too, but it seems to be a UK spread thing that people don't know where to walk on pavements/stairs.  Makes it easier when people adhere to the rules of the road and thus eliminates having that awkward shimmy side-to-side, but most people are too busy being vacant... and less anal about trivial things.
    Soon be nothing of this world.
  • Don't even get me started on the people who just stop in the middle of walkway, but that's not peculiar to London.

    I'd bet if you asked a lot of foreigners which side they should be walking on in England, they wouldn't t have a clue. You sure can't tell from walking the streets.
  • I suppose it's not always as clear cut as left and right, I often go roadside if passing a vulnerable person such as a child, elderly person, disables etc.  People stopping in the middle of the middle of the walkway, taking up the entire space or walking slow without consideration do boil my blood.
    Soon be nothing of this world.
  • Do they still say "Thank you for your custom" in any shops there?

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