How do you respond to a dinner invitation that says "Eight for eight thirty"? What might induce you to get off a London train at a place called Mud Chute? When is it okay to drive over a sleeping policeman? And why do teh Brits keep saying "Who's she, the cat's mother"?
Rules, Britannia is an invaluable resource for Americans who want to make a smooth transition when visiting or relocating to the UK. This entertaining and practical insider's guide contains scores of established do's and dont's that only a Brit would know.
Most of us know that an elevator is called a "lifet," a toilet is a "loo," and the trunk of your car is the "boot," but who would have a clue about a "sprog" or a "gobsmacked berk"? These phrases are part of daily conservation in the UK, and leave many visiting Americans as baffled as if they listening to a foreign language.
Covering such essential topics as vocabulary, house- or "flat"-hunting, business culture, child rearing, and even relationship etiqutte, Rules, Britannia will ease the anxiety that comes with a transatlantic move or extended visit, and is sure to make any old Yank feel like a regular Joe Bloggs.
Born and raised in England, but living now in Chicago, Hargis offers perspectives from both sides of the pond, proving once again that the United States and the United Kingdom are two countries divided by a common language. In chapters such as "Words That Guarantee Giggles" and "Grub and Other Delicacies," the author explains differences in pronunciation and usage between American English terms and British English terms: "In the U.K., Hush Puppies are a type of comfy shoe, and a sloppy joe is a sweater." Such discrepancies, obviously, can fill a book. Throughout, Hargis also includes lists of "British words that might require translation" (their sleeping policeman is our speed bump, and blokes named Randy or Willy will likely get stroppy and not at all cock-a-hoop after taking the piss from a tosser about their names) and "American words that the Brits don't share" (busboys and the concept of bussing a table are "totally meaningless in the UK"). Sections on road rules, real estate, fashion and employment will be handy for readers planning on staying longer than a vacation (or, in Brit: holiday).