Friday, 2 November 2007

"Don't Throw Your Love Away" - Searchers, 1964

My British (but living in the US) friend Steve wrote recently about how the American use of the term "Will Call" ticket window sounds strange to him. (See his entry of the 7th of October.) I'm going to write about something I hear in Britain which continues to sound very peculiar to me, even though I'm coming up on my 5th anniversary of living here. And I heard it on the radio again this morning.

People here often use the word "rubbish" as a verb.

On the report this morning, a woman said something like, "...and then they just rubbished his idea."

That sounds really, really weird to me. And then I started thinking. Rubbish here is what we Americans would call trash. And we would certainly say something like, "...and then they just trashed his idea."

So I guess it's not so strange after all.

By the way, I wonder how long I'll have to live here before I start calling the trash can a rubbish bin....and the trash men the bin men?


PS If you're interested in these American-versus-British-English-terminology issues, check out one of my favorite blogs -- "Separated By a Common Language". Lynne always has something interesting to say!


At 02 November, 2007 16:03 , Blogger lynneguist said...

You say trash men? I say garbage men. Another possible Briticism is dustmen, although that sounds a bit more old-fashioned to me.

Rubbish can be an adjective, too, as in That was a really rubbish idea.

Thanks for the link! :)

At 03 November, 2007 17:28 , Blogger G L Wilson said...

It's got to be better than "...and then they just pooh-poohed his idea", although you don't hear that too often these days, thank goodness.

At 08 November, 2007 22:16 , Blogger Milky Bar Kid said...

Watch out or they may take your UK Citizinship away! You can use the word "rubbish" almost everywhere in the UK. In fact, you will see rubbish almost everywhere in the UK. This is just garbage so trash it if you want to. Or perhaps the dustbin men will take it away and now we call them Refuse Disposal Technicians, isn't that just rubbish. LOL.


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