more words and meanings


I mentioned before that I’m English, living in Ontario. Both the UK and Canada have English as one of their official languages, they just use it differently.
I’m mostly used to car boot/trunk, bonnet/hood, garden/yard, flowerbed/garden, rubbish/garbage. I’ve even been heard to say tomayto and yoegert. We try and use the Canadian words too as it’s easier for me to get used to lip reading in Canadian – it helps if you can anticipate the words the speaker is likely to be using. A little deafie diversion there but back on track now. There are a few Canadian words that still make me giggle.

Bum bags and fanny packs. There I’ve said it, almost three years here and I can say the f word now. A fanny in the UK is not your arse, its a ladies front bottom. Every spring there’s a river race held near here, called “Float your fanny down the Ganny“. Imagine how much I giggled at that one.

Driving along the country roads you see huge signs saying “SOD”. Well, now that’s not very polite is it? I’ve seen a sign outside a farm describing the farmer as a sodding specialist, an advert asking if we have a large sodding job to do. Sod in Canada is turf.

Cottaging is a widespread weekend activity in Ontario, there are magazines that cater for the habit, there’s even a shop called Cottage Toys. It’s something for the whole family. Not so in the UK, wikipedia tells us more here. The Ontario version is described here.
This probably says more about my basic sense of humour, and maybe you have to be British to laugh. That’s what worries me really, I wonder what I have been saying in all innocence that’s not quite right to a Canadian. You see they really are too polite to tell you.

7 responses »

  1. Oh my goodness, Mog, as soon as I saw the title and the photo, I knew where this blog post was going. Luckily there were no beverages anywhere near me, otherwise my keyboard would have been in trouble.

  2. Fanny packs!!! lol, I had to laugh when I read that.
    My wife carried one of those when she was stationed in Korea. She rode her bike everyone and had to carry all her junk somehow. When we first moved into our home and we were digging through some of her old military crap and there she was “the fanny pack!!” They are silly!

    I’m gonna float my fanny down the ganny. lol That’s a riot.

    Peace out.

  3. I still giggle about the time I was in M&S in England and had been trying on a pair of trousers or what in Canada I would call pants. The fitting room lady asked me how I was doing and I said, "oh good but I wondering do you do alterations? I need my pants hemmed…"

    Of course, she went with it and had to ask her workmates if anyone could hem pants… I eventually caught on. 😉

    (Canada, pants = trousers : UK, pants = undies)

  4. Fun post! I love the English language and especially how the English use it versus Americans. Mog, you have a great sense of humor, you always make me smile.

  5. The “cottaging” one cracks me up everytime. Myself and a certain friend now use it all the time , deliberatly 🙂
    Another one I came across was don’t great your female friends with “how’s tricks?”, I’d use this all the time back in the UK. I had to reassure my new sailing budy that I didn’t think of her as a prostitute 🙂


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