Friday, September 22, 2006

Transatlantic War of Words

My Brussels readers will know the Tippler, if not by his online handle then by the elbow grooves he's left in every seedy bar in town. He's blogging (I can just see him in the corner at Fat Boy's bashing away at his computer, trying not to drop ashes in his keyboard), mostly about his efforts to shag some poor bird whose name I hope he has changed for public consumption.

His webpage is becoming a guilty pleasure -- one I'd hoped to keep secret. But this week he took a swipe at Americans for the way we, like, talk, you know? So I had to engage.

OK, so he's technically right about our spelling and pronunciation of aluminum (or aluminium, as its known everywhere else in the world), but I mean, who cares? How often does this come up on conversation? I suppose if you're discussing the tensile strength of varying sized containers of Strongbow, it might be an issue. Anyway, I posted the following comment on his website.

Craig Winneker said...
um, i would make two points on your observations on American language:

1) what a crock of shit

2) check out Wikipedia's interesting entry on the subject, in which you will read that American English more closely resembles so-called Old English, before Norman Invasion changes spellings to use the superfluous "u" and ridiculous "s" instead of "z". In other words, you Brits are really speaking bastardized French.
Also, as an editor, you should abhor the British tendency to use seven words when one will do. We Americans have been streamlining, baby, yeah!

Ok, I'm done.
The Tippler, or Tony, as I know him, he's a good bloke and has a way with words when he's sober and even when he isn't, which is more than most of us can say. He replied cheerfully and hey, we're only havin' a bit o' fun.

I'm eagerly awaiting a blog post from him explaining his mysterious switch from beer to cider... Scary...


Gawain Towler said...

I've wondered about the whole cider thing as well, it's not as f he is from the west country. I reckon its the effect of the effeet Kiwi he drinks with. Cider I can just about take, but putting ice in it? Now really

Anonymous said...


Do yourself a favour and have a second & better look at the Kiwi's feet - or should I say roots?

You would never be temerarious enough to try cider over ice, would you? You will never know what you are missing!

Tippler said...

Ok, guys. I won't go on about The Boy Winneker's other guilty pleasures but it's certainly a pleasure having him drop by my blog.

And while I've popped over, let's clear one or two things up: first, I won't pass an opinion on whether my drinking buddy is 'effeet' or not, (as Eliab is better qualified) but it certainly ain't the correct spelling, oh Waistcoated One...

As for the cider thing, well, I'm a tough northerner not a southern softy so I would NEVER, like EVER, drink it with ice!

Why did I change from Stella? The same reason I changed from Guinness back to Stella - a mere whim, chaps. It's a Virgo thing.


Another reason is that I do actually find it more refreshing and I seem to stay sober longer.

Ok, 'less drunk'.

Doubtless I'll be back on the Guinness once the nights draw in.

With a bit of luck I'll be back on 'Laura' too...


Anonymous said...

Yet another American wor(l)d war, although these words are lighter than swords, as poor men's words have little weight.

Pauvre Winneker, si ce que tu as à dire n'est pas plus beau que le silence, alors tais-toi!

But stop beating around the Bush and rather face the facts: it should not be that hard for you to figure out how you came to learn American as a SECOND language. Furthermore, since Francophony is honoured today, please remember which country offered you the Statue of Liberty, what exactly it stands for and where it appears to draw inspiration from.
Then only you may engage in order to honour and defend your country's flag and ideals. By now, you just have honoured it with a superfluous U and alleged fire of Z-eal.

As for some bird you mentioned,
you could meet her where eagles fly, but that would be impossible for you since the nearness of the blistering sun would soften the wax which holds your pigeon feathers together.

Pax tecum.

Ok, I'm done!

Tippler said...

Do you know? I think she's lost it...

Unknown said...

let's all take a deep breath i just wanted an excuse to post that picture of the chap slugging a bottle of strongbow...
peace and love etc.

Anonymous said...

What exactly has been lost here?

Certainly not our sense of humour!

Guys, have a nice day!