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As a result of the close-down of the UK by the British Government last night, we have made all the Buy/Sell areas read-only until we open back up again, so please have a look at the announcement linked here.

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Beardie

A strange world full of odd facts

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Oh Maryhill is a nice little spot 😁  For me though it has to be around the London Road, Gallowgate area. Despite attempts at gentrification the Old Guard are very much in evidence. I was actually on London Road visiting MacLeod Highland supplies after taking my wife for her hospital appointment on the day I mentioned earlier and, outside the entrance, was some extremely slim lady in her mid twenties with no teeth and a white, shiny complexion to rival Queen Elizabeth the First talking to a dandy in a smart tracksuit about how "ma caird's been cancell't so that's ma 'gosh darn' Christmas oot the windae!" 

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3 hours ago, Beardie said:

so that's ma 'gosh darn' Christmas oot the windae!" 

I do like how the Gaelic spellings sound nothing like the spoken word. :D

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19 hours ago, Max Headroom said:

BBC English I suppose!

 

Trevor

But that's an accent too. It always annoys me that people look on "Received English" as not being an accent in its own right. 

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16 hours ago, Beardie said:

Oh Maryhill is a nice little spot

Are the barracks still there? In the fifties, my brother did his basic training there, and that was his home base (2nd Bat. HLI). He was away from us for around nine months and when he came home on leave (bear in mind that he was born and bred in Hackney), I couldn't understand a word he said. He was more Rab C. Nesbit than Cockney.

 

John.

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 I think the barracks went back in the 60's. Don't know if even the Territorials are still in Maryhill now.

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On 12/19/2019 at 8:42 AM, Eric Mc said:

What's a "neutral" accent?

Purported to be Leicestershire. It's supposed to be the most accent neutral County in the Country, depending where in the County you are!

 

Paul

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21 minutes ago, PhoenixII said:

Purported to be Leicestershire. It's supposed to be the most accent neutral County in the Country, depending where in the County you are!

 

Paul

Which begs the question, what is considered a neutral accent in other Anglophone countries?

 

Trevor

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22 minutes ago, PhoenixII said:

Purported to be Leicestershire. It's supposed to be the most accent neutral County in the Country, depending where in the County you are!

 

Paul

 

Really! (Or Real-eh, which is what my family would say in this part of Lest-ah)

 

IanJ

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I grew up there. It used to be that you could tell which village people were from!

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Used to be like that in Scotland as well. Accents varied even just a few miles apart. My neighbour is a lovely wee old lady, originally from Fort William who has been in the village for the last sixty years. I was saying to her, about a year after I moved in, that I still hardly knew anyone in the village as I hadn't had as much chance to become part of the community as I had hoped with all the things going on in my family life. She replied "I wouldn't worry, I hardly know anyone here either". In her case what she was meaning was that all the 'native' villagers had moved on, or passed on, in recent years. As far as I know the only 'native' born person here is the postman and even he has moved out of the village down towards Dunoon. The days of folks growing up, living and dying all within a few miles is long since passed and we often know more about someone on the other side of the world than we do about our next door neighbour.

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One of Spike Milligans very prescient observations was the damage that migration, both national and international was causing. This was even then interpreted as a racist viewpoint but his concern was for the loss of cultural identity of both the migrants and the community they settled in. I spent my OE in the UK in the mid-sixties when dialects were a way to identify where a person was from. I was fortunate to live with an elderly couple at Tea Green near Luton and learnt heaps from them about local dialects, and the world that they had grown up in. It was fascinating stuff, even though I was still young and stupid enough not to appreciate fully that I was experiencing something that was even then being lost. They had spent their life in and around Tea Green, and had become a couple when there respective spouses had died and their pragmatic solution to a widow and a widower living alone in two adjoining council houses from which they could be evicted was to get married! 

 

They were tough as, both 75 years of age, both cigarette smokers. Both rode a pushbike to work, he as a gardener at the 'Big House' three days a week, she at the Flying Club greasy spoon five days a week. Both had grown up, got married, had children, lived and worked in the immediate area. The only time the old bloke had ventured far from Tea Green was during the war when he worked at 'the Vauxhall' as a machinist, a career he continued until retirement when he reverted to being a gardener. The wifes daughter lived in the nearby village of Cockernhoe with her family - and probably saw out her days there too.

 

Different world, and, even if there is a bit of rose tinting, I cant help but feel probably a better one too.

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I recall many years ago I met an old lady on Arran waiting for the ferry off the island to the mainland. She was in her late 70's and it was her first ever trip off the island! Unfortunately globalisation has been the death of many cultures over the last century or more. No-ones fault as such, simply that the voices you hear on your radio or television and the languages you read in your books aren't 'local'. Many in Scotland blame a school system that outlawed Gaelic and the English in general as being responsible for the all but dead state of the language but my personal view is that, if people had really wanted to they could have held onto the language but the allure of being able to understand BBC radio programmes and then television programmes, to read the vast amount of books published in English and to be able to communicate away from home were the real cause of the rapid decline of the language. Now we are also seeing a very rapid decline in local dialects as well. It's just the way of a 'connected' world. Sad yes but also inevitable and I daresay that we will eventually arrive at some sort of homogenized global culture unless of course something killed off global communications. 

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1 hour ago, Beardie said:

 Sad yes but also inevitable and I daresay that we will eventually arrive at some sort of homogenized global culture unless of course something killed off global communications. 

Even sadder that if the present trends continue that 'culture' will be almost exclusively derived from the least cultured nation on the planet, and appeal primarily to the lowest common denominator in society.

 

 

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18 hours ago, Kiwidave4 said:

One of Spike Milligans very prescient observations was the damage that migration, both national and international was causing. This was even then interpreted as a racist viewpoint but his concern was for the loss of cultural identity of both the migrants and the community they settled in. I spent my OE in the UK in the mid-sixties when dialects were a way to identify where a person was from. I was fortunate to live with an elderly couple at Tea Green near Luton and learnt heaps from them about local dialects, and the world that they had grown up in. It was fascinating stuff, even though I was still young and stupid enough not to appreciate fully that I was experiencing something that was even then being lost. They had spent their life in and around Tea Green, and had become a couple when there respective spouses had died and their pragmatic solution to a widow and a widower living alone in two adjoining council houses from which they could be evicted was to get married! 

 

They were tough as, both 75 years of age, both cigarette smokers. Both rode a pushbike to work, he as a gardener at the 'Big House' three days a week, she at the Flying Club greasy spoon five days a week. Both had grown up, got married, had children, lived and worked in the immediate area. The only time the old bloke had ventured far from Tea Green was during the war when he worked at 'the Vauxhall' as a machinist, a career he continued until retirement when he reverted to being a gardener. The wifes daughter lived in the nearby village of Cockernhoe with her family - and probably saw out her days there too.

 

Different world, and, even if there is a bit of rose tinting, I cant help but feel probably a better one too.

Odd, given that Spike was the son of a migrant. He didn't have much of an Irish accent.

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I would think that the son of a migrant is just as entitled to make comments and observations on the way migration (even locally between towns and cities and country and town) changes cultures as anyone else is. We are talking about observations of how changes in communication and mobile populations changes culture, nothing more nothing less. It is inevitable and obvious that, as we occupants of this world at large, became more and more able to communicate over distances and relocate across those distances culture will change and no-longer be restricted. Just the simple facts of life. I guess that, if we ever make it out into the stars, culture will start to become universal rather than global. 

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18 hours ago, Beardie said:

I recall many years ago I met an old lady on Arran waiting for the ferry off the island to the mainland. She was in her late 70's and it was her first ever trip off the island! Unfortunately globalisation has been the death of many cultures over the last century or more. No-ones fault as such, simply that the voices you hear on your radio or television and the languages you read in your books aren't 'local'. Many in Scotland blame a school system that outlawed Gaelic and the English in general as being responsible for the all but dead state of the language but my personal view is that, if people had really wanted to they could have held onto the language but the allure of being able to understand BBC radio programmes and then television programmes, to read the vast amount of books published in English and to be able to communicate away from home were the real cause of the rapid decline of the language. Now we are also seeing a very rapid decline in local dialects as well. It's just the way of a 'connected' world. Sad yes but also inevitable and I daresay that we will eventually arrive at some sort of homogenized global culture unless of course something killed off global communications. 

And yet the number of people now learning Gaelic (just released as a new option) via the popular Duolingo app is a huge opportunity to preserve and expand the language (edit: just checked and there are 108 thousand people learning Scottish Gaelic within two months of release)

 

tbh I’m hugely in favour of connecting up the world and moving around. Innovation and creativity increases exponentially with the opportunity for cross fertilisation of ideas and cooperation

Edited by LostCosmonauts
fact check

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As a Gaelic speaker/scholar myself I am all in favour of Gaelic being preserved and it's a beautiful language plus there is a relatively small but very valuable amount of poetry and literature written in the language that should be preserved but the reality is that, in the modern connected world, anyone learning Gaelic will either be learning it as a challenge, hobby, heritage object, nationalistic desire or simply to add to their linguistic knowledge. I very much doubt there will ever be a future time where you find any more than small groups here and there using Gaelic as a living everyday language. 

 

I have to say that I feel somewhat uneasy with the 'modernisation' that is currently going on with Gaelic. It is taking on mannerisms and styles of speaking from English and it could end up being a sort of mutated Gaelic/English hybrid in it's attempts to be 'down with the kids'.

 

I was actually talking with my father on the phone a couple of days ago and he was blethering on (as he is wont to do) about how he has that Duolingo app and he has so many points in his Spanish, So many in his Greek, He is also gathering points in his Gaelic, French etc. etc. I don't know anything about the app but it seems that, while my father may be signed up to 'learn' half a dozen languages what he is really doing is playing games to earn points in some race in half a dozen languages without really learning much about the languages and how to use them fluently in reality. It remains to be seen how many people of the 108 thousand will actually get even a basic fluency in Gaelic let alone a deep knowledge. 

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1 hour ago, Eric Mc said:

Odd, given that Spike was the son of a migrant. He didn't have much of an Irish accent.

 You apparently dont know a lot about Spike.

 

As Beardie has already observed there is nothing odd about a migrant expressing an opinion about migrants. In the world that Spike and I grew up in one could express an opinion as a discussion topic.

 

These days it seems everything has to be black or white, for or against, with no nuances or room for considering the wider issue.

 

I am a double migrant. Born a Scot, raised in England and for most of my life lived in NZ. I have my opinions on Scots, English and Kiwis, - good and bad, - and much sympathy for many of the, then unfashionable, and in some cases today still contentious, causes championed by Spike in his lifetime.

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Even the English that was spoken 50+ years ago is not the English that is spoken now. The way older people spoke in my little corner of Nova Scotia has changed and the younger generation speaks slightly differently. Words and phrases have been borrowed from different cultures from different places. Nothing stays the same.

 

After 400+ years of Roman influence, did the Britons speak the same as before the Romans arrived? And don't forget those damned Angles and Saxons! Look what they did to the local lingo.

 

 

 

 

Chris

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Mr Milligan was, and still remains, one of my hero's. No doubt he would reply to such a statement with rude words if he was able. I wish he were. I think he'd hate this world.

If I may, Arabic may be one of the planets oldest languages, yet even I could see when I was out there that it too is being corrupted by modern technology terms and the general influx of American English. Add to that 'street' Arabic as spoken by those under about 30. The written word is, I think, still holding out.

 

And I was reminded the other day of an old Arabic proverb that I love. 'I murmured because I had no shoes. Then I met a man with no feet'.

 

By the way, try reading an English book written in the forties or fifties and see how things have changed. Even then 'show' could be written as 'shew'. For example.

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16 minutes ago, dogsbody said:

Even the English that was spoken 50+ years ago is not the English that is spoken now. The way older people spoke in my little corner of Nova Scotia has changed and the younger generation speaks slightly differently. Words and phrases have been borrowed from different cultures from different places. Nothing stays the same.

 

After 400+ years of Roman influence, did the Britons speak the same as before the Romans arrived? And don't forget those damned Angles and Saxons! Look what they did to the local lingo.

 

 

 

 

Chris

Too true, everything “we” speak is mutated and cross pollinated variants on proto-Indo-European. The process has been going on as long as there has been anything recognisable as a language or a culture

Edited by LostCosmonauts

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I think the process has accelerated massively in the last century though due to communications becoming instant and global. I wonder though if it is possible to have a truly homogenised global culture as the lives, landscapes and daily challenges of people vary so widely across this planet. I must admit that, while I am a fan of Blues, Country, Rockabilly, Jazz, Heavy Metal etc. they really aren't, in any shape or form my own personal culture as, apart from the general messages of love, sadness etc. the worlds they come from are as alien to my little highland life as something from the Japanese folk tradition. I could say the same for say something like that Grime music I have heard of. I haven't been in London for twenty years and the times I was there were only working as a concert security man so it was 'arrive, do the gig, get out'. I never had any desire to visit let alone live in London and so, when someone sings about inner city London life they might as well be singing an Alpha Centaurian love song in terms of how deeply it would touch me.

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I don’t think you need worry that we’re heading toward homogenisation. This site is an example - we’re connected to the whole globe and have found a neat little enclave for model makers with a subculture (and sub sub cultures), rules, terminology and in-jokes in a way that lets us find like-minded (or like minded enough as we can be parts of our personal tapestries of enclaves)

 

Stand in a village or small town and look at how kids and young adults dress and it is pretty homogenous. Do the same in a big city and you’ll see far more variety and invention as people find enough people who are “weird like me” to be able to dress and live with more variety. A connected world creates ever more opportunity to find other people who are into Blues, rockabilly, jazz and bars that have jukeboxes and gigs that support those rather than mainstream pop & rock those this have more chance to diversify and thrive

 

p.s. I find Duolingo useful for learning (and I use the vocab that I pick up when I visit those places) but even if a great many people treat it as a game then great they’re still doing one of the best things they can do to protect neurons and brain health for the long term.

Edited by LostCosmonauts

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@Beardie it’s not only Scots Gaelic that is now assimilating English but is happening in Wales too. Both my parents were native Welsh speakers (I, to my shame, can’t speak it confidently, but know enough to hear the gist of proceedings). In the 60’s going on visits to Wales, dad would rail against the people daubing out English place names and the practice of introducing new ‘Welsh’ place names. A case in point is a village called Four Crosses near Pwllheli. It’s new Welsh name is Y Ffor. Y = the, but Ffor? That is a made-up word that just sounds Welsh.

 

On a lighter note, the Welsh for oven is popty and there is an urban myth that microwave is ‘popty ping’. Pity, as I quite like that one!

 

Trevor (with a v not an f)

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Language, like people, evolves. People also gradually over time will pick up the accent that is prevalent where they live. My Granny (bless her) came over from Ireland at the end of the 19th century, but when I knew her in the 50's, she sounded Scottish to me. Likewise, my Dad, from Ayrshire sounded English to me. It was only because my English teacher on meeting him at a parents open night, pointed out his accent to me.

It's been said that the English language is the richest language in the world, and that it is also a sweetheart language. Goodness only knows what was being spoken  in the days between the Roman occupation and William the Conqueror, but it was probably a mixture of Norse, Danish and Germanic. Then throw in the Norman language from 1066 onwards and it must have been a linguistic nightmare.

The English spoken today has changed from when I was a kid, which in general I see as not a bad thing, just inevitable. But the one aspect of change that I hate is the pseudo West Indian accent that you hear a lot of youngsters,black and white (and older) speaking. To my mind, there's only one source for that and that is (c)rap. I won't call it music because normally there's no singing involved. And that isn't me being an old reactionary, because I've spoken to lots of young kids and most feel the same way about it.

 

John.

 

Edit. The phrase "sweetheart" language was not my wording. I put a word that means "born out of wedlock", but either the powers that be or auto correct changed it. The word that I used is a perfectly good English word except when used in a derogatory way, which I wasn't doing in this instance. After all. if we were talking about files, how would we term a certain named one that has a rough cut? 

Edited by Bullbasket

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