…what’s in a WURD?… I’m fluent in uttering Rubb-ish… #TBSU…

…it’s not classified as a foreign language, but the patois that used to pass as voice communication back where I grew up in Docklands Govan in Glasgow is still unintelligible to the bulk of the rest of Mankind… even other Scots folks visiting ‘Glesca’, where the Commonwealth Games are currently in full flow, can be found reaching for the translation earpieces when the locals start talking… not so much dialect, more a divine interconnection of grunts and other guttural sounds, the Glaswegian tongue defies the linguistic abilities of most people I meet… I think this was what first drove me to attempt to garner at least a passing fluency in other languages throughout my career… even in London, it was necessary to modify my delivery… slowing down speech by at least 50%, and enunciating consonants that had long stagnated with non-usage… dotting around the planet over the past four decades has brought me the delights of living and interacting with the inhabitants of the Far East, and now the Middle East… a good foundation of six years in the Scottish Hebrides gave me more than a passing acquaintance with the Gaelic Language, the code-speak of the Gods… in Hong Kong, Cantonese absorbed a couple of years of learning…

chinese characters

…I well remember my first solo effort in it… at a small store I  asked in Chinese for a bottle of milk and a loaf of bread… the counter assistant promptly handed me a newspaper and a bar of chocolate, at which point I realised there was yet more WURK to do… in the Philippines the staccato rapid-fire intonations of Tagalog actually proved simpler than expected to cram into the ol’ brain box, with an incredible amount of eyebrow gestures attendant to underline the conversation… my academy French has hung around a lot longer than should be thought possible—it was so long ago… mais, la plume de ma tante EST bleu, mercy beaucoup...









…here in Kamel Kuntry, the thought that the guttural proficiency which lends itself to the Scots brogue might assist in mastery of Arabic was totally misguided… back to the newspaper and bar of chocolate thingy again there, I’m afraid… the over-riding conclusion is that part from my basic Govan-ese, (English is considered a foreign language in deepest Glasgow) I speak most fluently in uttering Rubb-ishBerlitz, eat yer heart out… see yeez later… LUV YEEZ!



Filed under Blether, Scribbling & Stuff

16 responses to “…what’s in a WURD?… I’m fluent in uttering Rubb-ish… #TBSU…

  1. LOL I can relate to the slowing down of word delivery Seumas, I had to do the same when I first arrived in England, but my native guttural abilities allowed me to embrace German sufficiently enough not to starve or remain lost for long when I lived there for a while 🙂
    PS I’m not Scots, but very closely allied to them – shhhh if you guess the answer to that 😀

    Liked by 1 person

  2. That takes me back… On my second day as an exchange student in West Germany, I went up to a street cart and asked in my best Deutsch ‘can I have a hot dog, please?’. She laughed and asked ‘American?’ I nodded, and turned beet red, knowing I had just done something really stupid. ‘you just asked for a dog in heat.” Fortunately I kept my wits instead of running away in shame and asked her to teach me the proper phrase…

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Reblogged this on Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life and commented:
    I have managed to mangle both French and Spanish in my travels and whilst a few substitutions in my shopping cart has not been too inconvenient it can be disastrous when describing symptoms to a local doctor…….Another great post thanks Seumas.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. laurie27wsmith

    In WW2 Seumas Scots were the preferred spies against the germans, because of their accent and it seemed they picked up the language far better than others. Now if they were Geordies……… 😉

    Liked by 1 person

  5. This takes me straight back to being a kid and sniggering with my brother on the way to Italy for our first foreign holiday as we learned how to say “I have left my glasses/ring in the lavatory” with the help of our Berlitz guide.



    Liked by 1 person

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