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Mad Scientess Jane Expat

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Deeds of Derring-Do | Full of Wild Inaccuracies and Exaggerations

The Society for the Promotion of British-American Cultural Exchange presents: [20041208|10:14]
Mad Scientess Jane Expat
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A short American-to-English dictionary


Chips = crisps, e.g. "I'll have a bag of crisps."
Fries = chips, e.g. "Fish and chips are mankind's greatest culinary invention."

Cookie = biscuit, e.g. "Want some tea and biscuits?"

Oatmeal = porridge, e.g. "Porridge for breakfast on a cold morning is divine."

Raisins = sultanas, e.g. "I'm putting sultanas in my porridge."

Eggplant = aubergine, pronounced "OH-ber-zheen." Sort of. Ish. It's hard to write phonetically.

Pants = trousers, e.g. "My trousers are too tight."
Underwear = pants, e.g. "That girl's dress makes it clear she isn't wearing pants."

Sweater = jumper, e.g. "You don't need a coat, just a warm jumper."

Sneakers or tennis shoes = trainers, e.g. "It's raining and my trainers are soaked."

Nylons = tights, e.g. "I snagged my tights. Do you have nail polish?"
Tights = tights. O….kay.

Cents = pence (or "pee"), e.g. "That'll be 50 pee." Now imagine if 50 Cent were from the UK.

ATM = cash point, e.g. "I got mugged at that cash point."

Store = shop, e.g. "I'm going round the shops to buy some trousers."

Drugstore = pharmacy, e.g. "I have a wicked hangover. Where's the pharmacy?" DO NOT say drugstore. People will assume you are looking for something quite different, and may direct you to Brixton.

Band-Aids = plasters, e.g. "I cut myself! Give me a plaster."

Vacation = holiday (or "hols" for short), e.g. "Suzie's on holiday."

On the weekend = at the weekend, e.g. "I'm going to Brighton at the weekend."

To rent = to let

Bathroom/restroom = toilet (or "loo"), e.g. "I need to use the toilet." (Otherwise, prepare yourself for the inevitable, "What, are you going to take a bath/have a rest? Haw!")

Monkey = You know what? Don't call anybody this. It's not considered cute here.

Exit = Way out, e.g. "The building's on fire. Where's the way out?"

Elevator = Lift, e.g. "Take the lift to the fifth floor for haberdashery."

Sidewalk = pavement, e.g. "That fucking bike just drove up on the pavement!"

Gas = petrol, e.g. "I have to stop by the petrol station."

Truck = lorry, e.g. "Mind that lorry." "What lorry?" splat

Drunk = pissed, e.g. "No, I am not sitting on the pavement because I'm pissed. It's comfortable."

Cigarette = fag, e.g. "Got a fag, mate?"

Spliff = spliff (Hooray.)

Asian = Indian, Pakistani (Use "East Asian" for other flavors, e.g. Japanese, Korean.)

Ass = arse, e.g. "What an arsehole." Although I find this one sounds funny in an American accent.

Lots = loads, e.g. "There's loads of these little idiosyncrasies that one LJ post won't cover, but these are the important ones if you don't want to be mocked or seriously misinterpreted."

AND LAST BUT NOT LEAST

Soccer = football.
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: becala
2004-12-08 21:18 (UTC)
Did NOT know the sultanas one. I did learn, while eating dinner with my friend's aunt, that what she kept calling "serviettes" were actually paper napkins. Hmmmmm.

Fun from Ireland:

[Re the smoking ban] "In Ireland, the only place you can have a fag and a pint is a gay bar."

[A very drunk man in Dublin:] *stares at my chest for a long long time* I like your jumper. *moves eyes to crotchal area* ..and your trousers *moves eyes upwards* And your hair's not bad, either. And I like your face, too.

Which is why I randomly scream at people: I like your FACE!!!! Best pickup line ever.
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[User Picture]From: nanila
2004-12-09 13:36 (UTC)
Sultanas are actually different from what we call raisins, due to the drying process and region of production, as I just learned. However, depending on the commonality of import and occurrence of the various types of dried grape, one term will take precedence over the other. Sultanas are more common here than what we call "raisins" in the US, so lots of people call any dried grape a "sultana." Boy, that's confusing.

Fun from Camden Market yesterday:

Friends from out of town visiting. One friend needed to buy a piece of luggage, since the wheel housing had cracked on her duffel bag. The man operating the stall offered a discount to her, telling the other friend [male] that "his daughter was very beautiful." It took us a bit to work out that he was talking about ME. AGH! Everyone in this country thinks I'm about fifteen! Christ!
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