Hang a right and chill out — 38 Comments

  1. Like you, I abhor text speak and will openly ridicule anyone who uses it outside of a text message (and even then it kind of pisses me off). However, even the greatest writers in English literature use the colloquialisms of their day in their work. It’s only through repeated exposure that we come to accept it as normal. I still think the word blog is stupid (sounds like a drunk retching), but it’s here to stay.

  2. There are times when a new phenomenon appears where a new word has to be invented. I too dislike ‘blog’ and all its dirivatives [blogger, blogging etc.] but there is really no alternative.

    At least an old word hasn’t been hijacked!!

  3. Although you may not thunk it from my Blog I am passionate about language and the way it evolves and develops. Sadly, you have to accept the changes as trying to fix a language will ultimately destroy it. English is riddled with words that aren’t really ours from French, German, Latin. Sometimes they change meaning through the translation and that’s fine.

    I made this point on another blog that in 50 years time we will write in a multimedia format with music, pictures and words all interchanging. You can see the start now ๐Ÿ™‚ lol

    In relation to apostrophes they are the bane of my life, 17 different ways to use them and I only know one – lists.

  4. That’s true, but talking about the word cool – I’m not really sure of its etymology except that it seems to have been popularised by jazz musicians in the ’40s and ’50s – my point was that even hundreds of years ago this sort of thing was done. Hopkins wrote in Felix Randal* “God rest him all road ever he offended”, which sounds like nonsense until you realise that where he was from, “road” was a synonym for “people”.

    Surely that’s no stranger than using the word cool to describe something as good?

    *like you I’ve only got the Leaving Cert to go on – I never did any English after that, which I kind of regret.

  5. Chill out dude! ๐Ÿ˜‰ I agree on text speak – disgusting. If I send texts I capitalise and puctuate and if it doesn’t fit I say less. I hate those people who think they are trendy by not usuing capitals or punctuation in their emails. Ugh! *SIGH*

  6. Good to see so many taking the fight to text-speakers – English is also something I am fierce about, and I refuse to use txt-spk even in text messages.
    I go through a lot of credit.
    What you should do, to truly sicken yourself in a masochistic way, is go to any Bebo site and look at the appalling language abuse going on there. I had the option of studying English at third level, but I turned it down because it is ruined completely with critical analysis and other shite like that.

    Kav’s rtight, too. Just read any of Shakespeare’s plays. Full of colloquial Middle English expressions.

  7. ‘Cool’ has been around for a long time all right. It really became cool in the Hippy era [ah! The good old days!! *sigh*].

    Deborah – Right on, man! My sentiments exactly ๐Ÿ™‚

  8. I have never gone into Bebo [not intentionally anyway], and frankly have no desire to. Did I see Tony Blair now has a Bebo account? Sad f*ck!!

    I agree about Middle English. Our K8 did an excellent article on it. I really should have just left it to her to speak out. She is a much better writer than what I am.

    [edit] I just went into Bebo for the laugh and picked the first site at random. I then picked the first text at random

    thought id begin a bit of interior design for u…. now go do some more urself!!!

    I see what you mean, Dario!!

  9. Deborah,

    The “Trendy People” you speak of will run into a lot of trouble with spam filters. I have seen legit mail with no punctuation and capitalisation marked as spam by a lot of filters (including Outlooks own inbuilt filter)

  10. Yah, it cn b quit rrtatin 2 try n red tht knd f txt-tlk.

    In fact, I usually ask people to repeat themselves if I get a message in it. It’s like some kind of cipher.

  11. Maybe Irish will make a comeback and in hundreds of years, after the Irish Empire has slaughtered and enslaved most of the free world, everyone will be teanga-ing away.

  12. Text speak isn’t new. Back in the ’70s it was called speed writing (or something like that). I used to take lecture notes without vowels and then wonder months later what a particular group of consonants might represent.

    Now if you want bad grammar, odd spelling and a complete dearth of inverted commas, try:

  13. I agree with you Grandad about many bloggers, the standard is very humbling as I’ve said before. I watch my son on MSN sometimes having half a dozen conversations at the same time which would be impossible if he didn’t use txtspk although I wonder exactly how much ‘communication’ is actually taking place. Very little I suspect. I love your stuff, it’s so . . .I wanted to say cool but will settle for eloquent.

  14. Wat yis al talkin bout?

    “Heres me” and “I went and done” or “I seen” are a few phrases I come across on a regular basis in this part of the world.

  15. @Baino – You never cease to embarrass me ๐Ÿ˜‰

    @Grannymar – “I gone and done” is the southern version. Listen to Bertie for five minutes [though he has improved – he must have been given lessons!!]

  16. Ian makes a good point… Joyce was very unconventional with construction and grammar. That’s my excuse for my eternal sentences… I’m the next James Joyce! With Joyce it’s called the “stream of consciousness” technique, with anyone else it’s bad writing! ๐Ÿ˜‰

  17. Joyce used his รขย€ยœstream of consciousnessรขย€? technique.

    Anthony Burgess invented his own slang in “A Clockwork Orange”

    Tolkein invented his own language.

    But I’m still going to heave a brick at The Plank next time he says “Check it out, you guys”. He should know better and is just trying [pathetically] to be ‘cool’.

  18. OH MY GOD – I did a massive comment and it has vanished, very annoying.

    In summary, language is alive, the meaning and use of words change or die. In 50 years we will be writing in a multimedia format, words, icons, images etc ๐Ÿ™‚ if you see my meaning.

    17 uses for an apostrophe and only know 1, lists.

  19. Grandad,

    Queen Elizabeth is currently visiting the United States and I understand that she is very grateful to George W. for going to the considerable trouble of learning a little English so they could converse!

  20. But he still got his dates wrong.

    And he committed the unforgivable sin of winking at her. She was not amused ๐Ÿ˜‰

  21. Do you think she was amused when they gave her a 21 gun salute; 22,if you count the one Cheney got off………

  22. Brian;

    If you think I’m kidding
    about the 22 gun salute, all I can say is:
    the Queen was DARFC
    Look it up, you have the site listed above.

  23. Text-speak, The DORT accent, and Americanised English, all drive me nuts. Listening to a couple of teenage girls updating each other on the latest instalment in their relationships turns me into a mentally-muttering old bag – and it’s not that i’m jealous! It’s the inability to form a sentence. If you wrote it down it makes no sense at all. Example:

    Stacey: “I am SOOOO like NOT cool about this.”
    Kylie: “So what’s the story?”
    Stacey: “He walks in, right? And he’s with yer wan, right? And i’m there, like, am i bothered? And he’s like, do i see you? Do i NOT!!! So i say to Britney, let’s hang somewhere else, let’s shift one of his mates, then he’ll be, like, SOOO pissed.”

    I could go on. But then i would start on bare midriffs in winter and chills in their kidneys and skirts like pelmets and then i would remember that i wore skirts like pelmets once myself (yep, i was a Sixties dolly-bird – white boots, false eyelashes and all) and i would hear myself and groan “oh god, i have turned into my mother”.
    But though we may have been economical with the clothing, we spoke proper English !! We started and finished whole sentences.
    Our slang words were “with-it” and “mod” and “fab” and “groovy” and yes, “cool”.

    Closing on “cool”, the other day i heard a senior executive (age 55) of a major financial institution acknowledging a message about a completed action with “Ok, that’s cool” and on being told of a change of plan, replying “I’m cool with that”. I didnt think he was cool. I thought he was a right wally.

  24. Monique – you could have written the piece for me!!

    That “SOOO not” whatever really gets under my skin too. The only thing you got wrong was the phonetic for ‘right’. Roish?

  25. Roish!! Oh and did i mention “rind-abouts” – AA Roadwatch presenters mention them a lot. I know i’ve strayed from text-speak to inarticulacy to new-fangled accents…. but it all comes under Abuse of Language!

  26. P.S Grandad: I knew what was missing. You reminded me. The last line of the above dialogue has to be:
    And Britney goes “Whatever”.

  27. I remember learning once, that Traffic Circles, in Rhodesia or maybe South West Africa were called, keepy-lefties.

  28. Quidquid latine dictum sit, altum sonatur, avus.

    Personally, I hope a special circle in Hell is reserved for people who use the phrase ‘my bad’.

    But let’s not even go there… ๐Ÿ˜‰

  29. And what about “Hell-Oh-o?” Which no longer is a greeting, but a substitute for “Whaddya mean by that?” or “You must be bloody joking”.
    As in overheard anecdotes such as:

    “Your credit card has been rejected, madam”, says the rat-faced little fecker on the till. And I’m: “Hell-OH-oh? Rejected, bollox. I’m thirty grand in credit, you wanker.”

    Oh, sorry about that – I’m running amok with the dialogue. Combination of long-standing tendency to store snatches of overheard conversation and regurgitate them later, like Maeve Binchy, and the fact that I have just been over-dosing on Swearing Lady. (Best laughs i’ve had in ages!)

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