A short guide to Great Britain… (2)

But first…
Dulltown, Europe: Today’s instruction is to try to hold it up close to the ceiling using a broom or a golf club whilst tap dancing and singing ‘I Got Rhythm’ by George Gershwin.
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Shall we have another look at that little junk shop book that I introduced to you a couple of weeks ago dear reader?

DSCN3749 It’s a booklet from 1942 issued to all the US service people who came over to Britain in the dark days of World War Two – a short guide to the UK and its culture.
Today, let’s have a look at pages 2 and 3.

British Reserved, Not Unfriendly.
The British are often more reserved in conduct than we are. On a small crowded island where forty-five million people live, each man leans to guard his privacy carefully – and is equally careful not to invade another man’s privacy.
So if Britons sit in trains or buses without striking up conversation with you, it doesn’t mean they are being haughty and unfriendly… they don’t speak to you because they don’t want to appear intrusive or rude.
Another difference. The British have phrases and colloquialisms of their own which may sound funny to you. You can make just as many boners in their eyes. It isn’t a good idea to say “bloody” in mixed company in Britain – it is one of their worst swear words. To say, “I look like a bum” is offensive to their ears, for to the British this means that you look like your own back-side…

About Dave Whatt

Grumpy old surrealist artist, musician, postcard maker, bluesman, theatre set designer, and debonair man-about-town. My favourite tools are the plectrum and the pencil...
This entry was posted in archeology, existentialism, history, humour, information, reading, serendipity, surrealism, war, words and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to A short guide to Great Britain… (2)

  1. Michael says:

    This is humane but hilarious. They also made training films along the same lines – I’ve seen one presented by Burgess Meredith, the future Penguin. He explained that if a Brit family invited you for tea, you should not eat all the tomaytos, because there could be a week’s ration on the table.

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