Proof Americans and Brits speak a different language

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  • Nick Tamen wrote: »
    Is 'gladsome' actually a term in regular use in the US?
    No, which is why I said “And per at least one hymn, gladsome.” I’ve rarely heard it used outside the hymn, except perhaps by someone consciously referencing the hymn.

    But as @Lamb Chopped says, troublesome and loathsome are in common use in my experience, as are worrisome, tiresome, meddlesome, quarrelsome and wholesome.

    Identical experience (at least with "some" words).
  • BroJamesBroJames Purgatory Host, 8th Day Host
    … and noisome is a familiar word, though thankfully I don’t often have cause to use it.
  • I would say "noisome" is uncommon bordering on rare in these parts. So much so that people think it means "noisy".
  • orfeo wrote: »
    Kylie - largely confined to this country until one of them escaped and went global.

    It always makes me giggle to think that in about 50 years' time there are going to be lots of little old ladies called Kylie.


  • There is a section in the supermarket we use marked 'Wholesome Foods'. The implication that the remainder of the food they sell is unwholesome is worrying, though their honesty is commendable.
  • Eirenist wrote: »
    There is a section in the supermarket we use marked 'Wholesome Foods'. The implication that the remainder of the food they sell is unwholesome is worrying, though their honesty is commendable.

    I have always thought that about "health food" -- does the rest cause sickness?
  • mousethief wrote: »
    Eirenist wrote: »
    There is a section in the supermarket we use marked 'Wholesome Foods'. The implication that the remainder of the food they sell is unwholesome is worrying, though their honesty is commendable.

    I have always thought that about "health food" -- does the rest cause sickness?
    According to some True Believers, yes.


  • Ah! "Homely". In the UK it denotes something home-like, cozy (which makes sense, etymologically), whereas in North America it means something (of a person, dog, usually something animate) somewhere between plain and ugly.
  • Ah! "Homely". In the UK it denotes something home-like, cozy (which makes sense, etymologically), whereas in North America it means something (of a person, dog, usually something animate) somewhere between plain and ugly.
    Yes, which caused some bewilderment on my part when I first encountered Tolkien’s reference to Rivendell as “the Last Homely House East of the Sea.”

  • All the 'some' suffixed words mentioned in recent posts are common in the UK - 'troublesome' etc.

    Nevertheless, I might be wrong, but I do get the impression that there are more words in common US usage which end that way. It might be my imagination. I don't know. Perhaps I've heard one or two instances such as 'bothersome' and assumed that there are many more than there actually are.
  • BroJamesBroJames Purgatory Host, 8th Day Host
    I’m used to bothersome as a UK usage.
  • Ah! "Homely". In the UK it denotes something home-like, cozy (which makes sense, etymologically), whereas in North America it means something (of a person, dog, usually something animate) somewhere between plain and ugly.

    Which is why I (as a Brit) always struggled a little with the Chi-Lites' hit single Homely Girl. I never realised just how much of an insult it was.
  • Nick Tamen wrote: »
    mousethief wrote: »
    Eirenist wrote: »
    There is a section in the supermarket we use marked 'Wholesome Foods'. The implication that the remainder of the food they sell is unwholesome is worrying, though their honesty is commendable.

    I have always thought that about "health food" -- does the rest cause sickness?
    According to some True Believers, yes.
    Especially due to additives and processing, and allergens. There are other things, but those are likely the ones avoided by *supermarket* health foods.

  • Golden KeyGolden Key Shipmate
    edited September 20
    mousethief wrote: »
    I would say "noisome" is uncommon bordering on rare in these parts. So much so that people think it means "noisy".

    Thx for this. I looked it up. I think I've always thought of it as "annoyingly noisy". But it's various versions of "harmful", "offensive", and disgusting.

    Perhaps there could be "noisome noise"?
    ;)
  • Golden Key wrote: »
    mousethief wrote: »
    I would say "noisome" is uncommon bordering on rare in these parts. So much so that people think it means "noisy".

    Thx for this. I looked it up. I think I've always thought of it as "annoyingly noisy". But it's various versions of "harmful", "offensive", and disgusting.

    Perhaps there could be "noisome noise"?
    ;)

    I have mostly heard/read it (when used correctly) to refer to smells or things that smell bad.
  • There is a standard condition in most leases forbidding the carrying on of 'noisome or offensive trades' on the leased premises.
  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    Nick Tamen wrote: »
    Ah! "Homely". In the UK it denotes something home-like, cozy (which makes sense, etymologically), whereas in North America it means something (of a person, dog, usually something animate) somewhere between plain and ugly.
    Yes, which caused some bewilderment on my part when I first encountered Tolkien’s reference to Rivendell as “the Last Homely House East of the Sea.”

    Conversely, when AD&D Unearthed Arcana (unwisely) introduced the 'Comeliness' stat and I rolled low and was rated as "Homely" I had to reach for a dictionary...
  • KarlLBKarlLB Shipmate
    "Wholesome" isn't unknown, but to me always conjours an image of a middle class evangelical contrasting books, films or telly he approves of with the sort of depravity I like.
  • BroJamesBroJames Purgatory Host, 8th Day Host
    edited September 20
    Interestingly it appears to have become a term of approval for good internet content etc. among my age 20-something contacts. The ones I know are mostly middle class, though not evangelical, as such.
  • BroJames wrote: »
    I’m used to bothersome as a UK usage.

    Whereabouts in the UK?

    Or, if I were to ask in South Walian dialect, 'Where to do you live?'
  • I remember a number of rural people would use the word "Whereabout." I always understood it as referring to a local landmark other people would recognize. For instance, we lived about a mile south of the Fechtner farm. Everyone knew where the Fechtner farm was.
  • BroJamesBroJames Purgatory Host, 8th Day Host
    I grew up in SE England and live in NW England, but am conscious that some of my idiolect reflects Scots heritage.
  • BroJames wrote: »
    I grew up in SE England and live in NW England, but am conscious that some of my idiolect reflects Scots heritage.

    Fair do's mind.

    I wonder whether 'bothersome' is more a Scottish / Northern Irish thing.

    I've not heard it in NW England, but then I don't live in either Lancashire or Cumbria.
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus

    I wonder whether 'bothersome' is more a Scottish / Northern Irish thing.

    I think we'd more likely say it was a scunner.
  • Firenze wrote: »

    I wonder whether 'bothersome' is more a Scottish / Northern Irish thing.

    I think we'd more likely say it was a scunner.

    Ok. New one on me.
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    Firenze wrote: »

    I wonder whether 'bothersome' is more a Scottish / Northern Irish thing.

    I think we'd more likely say it was a scunner.

    Ok. New one on me.

    Also available as a verb. 'The whole house is in a guddle and I'm scunnered with the stoor' (to be both illustrative and accurate *workmen in*)
  • That sounds irksome to me.
  • Firenze--

    Might you translate that, please? Is it "the house is a mess"? And what's "stoor"?

    Thx!
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    Golden Key wrote: »
    Firenze--

    Might you translate that, please? Is it "the house is a mess"? And what's "stoor"?

    Thx!

    'The house is an extreme mess and I am utterly fed up with the filthy dust'

    I gave the Scots version, but were I back in Ulster might have said 'I'm scunnered the house is that throughother I'm in clabber to the knee'. 'Clabber' being another fine word for dirt, muck, mess; in extreme cases you can be in clabber to the oxters (armpits).

    (Pleased to report the workmen have now gone for the time being, so house slightly less of a midden).
  • "Scunner" is a wonderful word. I know exactly what is meant when someone says of another "She's a right scunner." It means she will never be happy or satisfied, never say thank you, always be complaining.
  • Firenze wrote: »
    Golden Key wrote: »
    Firenze--
    And what's "stoor"?

    filthy dust'

    Dust comes in two varieties - "stoor" which is, as Firenze says, filthy, and "stew" which is dust which has drifted gently into corners - dust bunnies.

    You can have a perfectly clean house one day, which is covered in stoor the next, but stew involves longer term neglect.

    Similarly, it only takes one set of muddy footprints to render a clean kitchen floor dubby, but clarty involves more dirt.

  • Another very useful Scots word is 'havering'. I used it at work once, which pleased a colleague, as he knew exactly what I meant, but neither of us could translate it it exactly into North American English for the benefit of the others present. 'Bullsh*tting' was a common word in that environment, but seemed too intense and perhaps more intentional. I still haven't come up with a good equivalent.
  • Another very useful Scots word is 'havering'. I used it at work once, which pleased a colleague, as he knew exactly what I meant, but neither of us could translate it it exactly into North American English for the benefit of the others present. 'Bullsh*tting' was a common word in that environment, but seemed too intense and perhaps more intentional. I still haven't come up with a good equivalent.

    Does "waffle" capture most of the sense?
  • Hmm... Yes - that's close, though I still feel there's a nuance there that I can't quite define. I think it has to do with the way my father said it. When he talked about havering and my Londoner mother talked about waffling, it seemed there was a difference.
  • DafydDafyd Shipmate
    Waffling has slight pejorative overtones: people may describe an evasive politician as waffling or bullshitting. I don't think you'd get an English singer singing, when I waffle I know I'm going to be the man who is waffling to you.
  • Dafyd wrote: »
    Waffling has slight pejorative overtones: people may describe an evasive politician as waffling or bullshitting. I don't think you'd get an English singer singing, when I waffle I know I'm going to be the man who is waffling to you.

    I think waffle and bullshit are quite different. Bullshitting implies making stuff up to me - groundless assertions and so on - whereas waffle when used by politicians is more an evasive tactic where they use a lot of words and time to say nothing at all.

    I was going to suggest "natter", but I don't think that's quite right. "Prattle"?
  • Hem and haw?
  • orfeoorfeo Shipmate
    Those Scottish words often look like they have Nordic overtones...

    Came because I was reminded of an American choice that I’m gradually getting used to. For a long time, anytime an American podcaster said “obligated” I wanted to call out “obliged” in response.
  • Those words don't mean the same thing to me. Obligated means formally required. Obliged means you should by convention but are not required.

    Natter means more fussy than prattle to me. Prattle is aimless and not emotional. Nattering implies the person is irritable. Do you use the word faff? Which means to me to delay by aimless fossicking about.
  • A literal use of "fossicking", AIUI, is digging for opals. Not far under the surface, IIRC?
  • orfeoorfeo Shipmate
    edited September 26
    Those words don't mean the same thing to me. Obligated means formally required. Obliged means you should by convention but are not required.

    Well, as far as I can recall the contexts I have heard people using 'obligated' have not had anything formal/legal/binding about them. But I haven't kept any notes. And of course I wouldn't tend to notice when an American podcaster said "obliged".

    A couple of quick Googles confirms that that distinction tends to only exist in North America, and elsewhere "obliged" is used for both.

  • Natter means more fussy than prattle to me. Prattle is aimless and not emotional. Nattering implies the person is irritable. Do you use the word faff? Which means to me to delay by aimless fossicking about.

    To me, prattle implies long-winded and pointless, whereas natter is more of a social chat - certainly not carrying the "fussy" implication. Faff is a splendid word of much use, and as you say refers to pointless dicking around that wastes time rather than taking. I suppose faff could involve fossicking, but rarely does - fossicking is strictly hunting for something (usually in a drawer of "useful" items of indeterminate origin.)
  • Wasn't thinking of legally binding. I do recall someone making something of the differences between shall and must. As in you shall/ must. Which don't differentiate in my thinking if someone's telling me to do something.
  • To me, 'Prattling' is what young children do when they are able to talk, and it's charming. 'Natterning' is housewives of a certain age chatting together on doorsteps, or when out shopping. I suppose I'm showing my own age!
  • FirenzeFirenze Shipmate, Host Emeritus
    Hmmm. Shades of -

    Women
    Rabbit rabbit rabbit women
    Tattle and titter Women prattle
    Women waffle and witter

    Men Talk. Men Talk.


    Liz Lochhead: Men Talk
  • Firenze--

    Sounds like something from the musical/movie "The Music Man"!
    :)
  • jedijudyjedijudy Heaven Host, 8th Day Host
    My mind went exactly there, @Golden Key !
  • {High-fives Ms. Jedi.}
  • EnochEnoch Shipmate
    How do you say the word antifa?

    It's not a word I've actually heard used much here, but I'd imagined it was pronounced ANT-i-fa, with the stress on the first syllable and possibly a lighter stress on the 'fa'. I think that's usually assumed to be the case here. But in the debate between the presidential candidates Mr Trump, and I think Mr Biden, pronounced it 'anTEEfa' with the stress on the middle syllable.

    What's usual where you live? Is 'anTEEfa' usual in the US or is it peculiar to the president?

  • Anti-fascist. To my ears the middle syllable is overly stressed and emphasized by the American speakers you mention. The stress is there but not pumped up like they do it.

    It's not an organization BTW. It's about principles.
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