Monday, December 1, 2008

A Translation From The Original English

Chris and NickM from the Counting Cats blog are frequent commenters on this site.

I believe that the Counting Cats site should join Shakespeare, The King James Bible, and William Faulkner as one of the great monuments to the glory of the English language.

As I understand it, Chris lives in Australia and Nick is in England.

But for Texans, Mississippians and, well, people who don't usually listen to the BBC, Masterpiece Theater, Shakespeare, or even Monty Python, some of the Counting Cats vocabulary can be difficult. As in Shakespeare, The KJV, and Wild Willie Faulkner, the terminology can be a barrier to understanding.

As a service to the English speaking world, I am going to translate the difficult terms in one of NickM's posts from the beautiful (yet primitive) form of English used in the U.K. into the more advanced form used in Fort Worth, Texas. This is Nick's story of a Mr. Khoja, who is suing his employer. Please remember that standards for Political Correctness in England are not as evolved as they are in Cowtown. After all, England is in Europe. Fort Worth is in west Texas. Let's begin:

A Muslim chef is suing the Met because he is feels religiously discriminated against because he is expected to cook bacon and pork sausages for the dibbles’s breakfasts.

You mighta heard about the Muslims. They're now England's top dog church, and they're gonna control the U.K. courthouses if everybody else allows them to practice Sharia Law on British soil.
A "chef" is a fancy name for someone who cooks. Genuine working chefs can actually be seen at a few places over in Dallas.
"Religious Discrimination" is like the feeling experienced in Fort Worth by all non-Baptists. It's merely what they should expect.
Nick accidentally shows us how badly his Mama raised him when he says "pork sausage". (In many primitive cultures, they actually make sausage from something besides pigs. If I'm lyin', I'm dyin'.)
"The Met" is short for "Metropolitan Police Service".
The word "dibble" started off funny. According to The Urban Dictionary, a dibble is a "....Police officer, a name taken from the U.S. cartoon, Top Cat, where the local cop is called Officer Dibble. Used in Northwest England."

He is no ingenue.

This dude didn't just fall off a Tater Wagon on his way into town.

He’s a former senior catering manager at Hendon Police College and sixty years old.

A "senior catering manager" is somebody who rides herd on a lot of cooks. If he's done that job, and he's already older than God's dog, then Nick wants us to know that this particular Muslim chef has handled lots and lots of pork sausage on his ride up the trail to being the senior catering manager. He's handled bacon. And ham. And pig feet, pork rinds, and pork tenderloin, which is damn good with biscuits for breakfast. Chitlins might be too much, though.

NickM usually does a lot of bellyachin' about government waste, and he's missing a chance to ask "What the hell does Hendon Police College need with a senior catering manager?". None of my business. It's Nick's website.

You’d a thunk by now he would have come across that phenomenon called the “full English Breakfast” by now.

"You'd a thunk" is prob'ly an American saying, since I understood it without looking it up. This is a subject for further research.

Here's some Wikipedia, talking about a "Full English Breakfast": The normal ingredients of a traditional full English breakfast are: bacon, eggs, fried or grilled tomatoes, fried mushrooms, fried bread or toast, and sausages, usually served with a cup of tea. Black pudding is added in some regions as well as fried leftover mashed potatoes. Originally a way to use up leftover vegetables from the main of the day before, bubble and squeak, shallow-fried leftover vegetables with potato, has become a breakfast feature in its own right. Baked beans and hash browns are modern additions that have crept into many recipes.

After all that, if you're curious, you can hit on this next link and read about Gout in Britain.

I don’t know if Khoja is involved in the all too common now legal jihad or if he is merely fancying retirement and wants a nice little nest-egg and his solicitor told him he could make a packet out of it.

The British folks say "his solicitor" instead of "his g**damn Lawyer". A "packet" is a small parcel, in this case, one that contains money. Therefore, Nick isn't sure if Mr. Khoja 1) wants to make a religious statement by raising hell and rolling a stump under it, or 2) just wants to make a whole lot of money by suing the government.

I was prepared to consider the latter - a chancer on the make - the most likely until I saw this…

A Chancer, says WordWeb Online, is "Someone who risks loss or injury in the in the hope of gain or excitement" (we've all been there, ain't we?) or "A person who places expediency above principle".

I bet that last one nailed it.

Nick quotes from the article he saw in The Daily Mail.....

Britain’s most senior Muslim officer, Assistant Commissioner Tarique Ghaffur, has accused the force of racial discrimination and the National Black Police Association has urged people from ethnic minorities not to join.

Mr Khoja was originally represented by Dr Shahrokh Mireskandari, the controversial lawyer at the centre of the race war, but changed solicitors in August.

His current lawyer Khalid Sofi said there was an ‘important issue of principle at stake in Mr Khoja’s case’.

‘He has genuine and strong religious beliefs and expects that they will be accommodated,’ he added.


The Daily Mail has probably got way more readers than The Fort Worth Star-Telegram, but they can't even spell the word "center". Lordy, what a country.
Now we're back to Nick's opinions, with no more interruptions from The Daily Mail.

Can we for the fifteenth billion time state that religion does not equal race?

In the U.S., we'd say "fifteen billionth time", but you probably got his point. Why is the National Black Policeman's Association getting riled up over a church problem? Are races and religions really one and the same? Doesn't your religion depend on thinking and reasoning things out all by yourself? Or are you just born into it? Hmmmm..... Awww, never mind.

I just wish all the Muslims and Jews over there could just sit down and settle their differences like Christians.

For the love of God / Allah / Jehovah / the Flying Spaghetti Monster....

1) God: the only God, the one that created heaven and earth in six days, the Supreme Being worshipped by Fort Worth Baptists.
2) Allah: the Arab mis-pronunciation of the word "God".
3) Jehovah: another name for God, invented by William Tyndale as a way to pronounce the Hebrew YHWH, which didn't have any vowels.
4) The Flying Spaghetti Monster: a critter in another religion, somewhere between Catholic and Cooking, where heaven and earth was both made by The FSM using "his noodly appendage".

....For the love of God, please leave that canard (a lie) keyed-up and on it’s rims on the hard shoulder. (I ain't 100% sure, but I think it means "strip the tires off of it and leave it on the side of the road with the motor running.)

Please. Pretty please. And quite what the NBPA is doing by telling ethnic minorities not to join the fuzz (Police) is utterly beyond me.

That is beyond parody. (He can't even make fun of it. He's been around the world 8 times and to 3 Messican funerals, and he's still ain't seen anything like it.)

I am gob-smacked. (Bewildered. "Everlasting Gobsmackers" is the candy in "Charlie And The Chocolate Factory" - a big book without any pictures by Roald Dahl.)

I am truly discombobulated. (Confused as a goat on astroturf.)

I mean you’ve got a bunch of folk of colour (that's a lot better than the politically incorrect term "colored people", isn't it?) who are coppers (police) telling other folk of colour not to bother joining because… What, you might only rise to Assistant Comissioner!


Bloody hell, (Hell's Bells) that pays a heck of a lot more sponds (Greenbacks. A half breed of "pounds sterling") than I’m ever likely to see. Apart from that really shouldn’t the NBPA be trying to recruit more technicolour (minority) officers? I mean, really, such an organisation shouldn’t even exist (this is the truth folks - the UK is one of the least racist societies on the planet - I know that fact must cut wannabee Malcolm Xs to the quick but a fact it remains) but given that it does exist one would have thought that’s it’s primary justification would be to recruit more, not fewer, officers of African and Asian descent.

But then I’m reet naive me. (The Urban Dictionary has 3 meanings of "reet", and the English scholars and experts gathered around my laptop cain't agree about the right one. I don't know Nick well enough to say, since we've howdy'd, but we ain't shook yet.)

Of course that isn’t it’s role. Because ya see if it ever did achieve it’s alleged goal then that’s the point at which the gravy train (the easy money) hits the buffers (ends) and it’s passengers (the Professional Victims) have to find a proper way to make a living.

Instead, why not discourage blacks and Asians from joining the force so you can bitch (bitch) about the situation ad infinitum (a long, long, long time).

Oh, and go for quotas for promotion at the same time. Brilliant! You go for quotas and restrict the number of people elligible then you do a number for your own progress up the greasy pole. (Nick says everybody who whines about cooking pork should just be part of a set-aside. Go ahead and have the government separate the sheep from the goats. To "progress up the greasy pole" means to move further up the feed trough. Make up a quota for that too.)

Yes, I know that’s a political term but any bugger (fudge-packer) who believes that any police position above sergeant in the UK isn’t intrinsically a political one is utterly deluded (loco). Hell, Bob Peel is doing a triple salko in the grave....(Ok, this gets complicated. Robert Peel is who thought up the police force. A triple salko is a spinning move in gymnastics and ice skating. So Nick is saying that the father of the modern police force is turning over in his grave because muslim cooks don't want to cook pigs.)

Sam Vimes is back on the sauce (despite the best efforts of Lady Vimes and indeed Nobby Nobbs and Fred Colon) over it. (Sam Vimes is a policeman in some science fiction books. To go "back on the sauce" means, in Baptist terms, to succumb to the temptations of Demon Rum. Nick is saying that a made-up policeman has fallen off the wagon because muslim cooks don't want to cook pigs.)

This utterly stinks. (This is a bunch of horsecrap.) I shall leave you with two addendums to this rant. (Nick wants to make two more points and tell a deathbed conversion story, then he's going to end the sermon and pass the collection plate.)

1) The man claims to be a truly observant Muslim. (Mr. Khoja claims to practice what he preaches.) Judging by the piccy (pictures in the newspaper) he isn’t observing the sunna (Muslim Bible verses) about not shaving his beard. (Mr. Khoja shaves his face.) If he can pick and choose then so can his employers.

2) Tolerance is a two way street. My wife is a vegetarian. (Vegetarians are people who don't eat meat. Yes, they exist. By choice !!!!)

She was once even a vegan (she went through another stage where she wouldn't even wear leather. But then she got cured.)

....and I thought she was from Derbyshire - boom, boom! (this is a very bad Nick joke. Some scholars think it was thrown in here by someone else.)

....but she’s happy to handle meat. Hell, a few years back I did a swallow dive down the stairs (5.9 for artistic expression) and broke both wrists. (See the comments about a "Triple Salko") She was perfectly happy to cook me a steak at the time. She thinks eating meat is wrong.

She has a moral objection to killing animals (I once heard that there was a person in Dallas who felt this way) but her biggest concern was messing it up because she wasn’t 100% sure what she was doing. (I know, I know....you're wondering why he married her if she couldn't cook a steak. But these are British people. They're a different breed of cat.)

My wife has a logical, sensible (I was once almost a vegetarian myself) reason for objecting to all meat. She is also an atheist. (Atheist: Somebody who doesn't believe that God didn't create animals for her to not eat. Or someone who does believe that God didn't create animals for her to eat. Or someone who doesn't believe that God did create animals for her to not eat. It gets complicated.)

Why does that count for less than the opinion of a follower of a depraved C7th Bedouin (7th Century nomad) on one sort of meat? Well why? The fact that my wife was born in 1979 and Muhammed died in 632 doesn’t cut it. (It makes no sense. It don't add up.) Neither does the fact that Big Mo (Muhammed, the Muslim Jesus) has umpty million followers (lots of deluded victims). Why do we give religions such scope beyond what we allow the un-religious? I mean, at the end of the day, it’s all just opinion, right?

*********************
Like many of our beliefs about eating meat, pig cooking, the validity of Muhammed and God and Jehovah and The Flying Spaghetti Monster, this translation is all an opinion. I think my translation is accurate, others might not.

Someone claiming to be NickM, or claiming to speak for NickM, might eventually sign on and take issue with my interpretation of NickM's words. I'm going to require a very high level of proof before I believe that it's really NickM speaking, though.

I've become very, very loyal to this translation.

5 comments:

Lazy Slacker said...

I was once a believe in the FSM; however, during a philosophy of religion class this semester I discovered the truth -- I saw the light. Yes, I came to know the Fluffy Marshmellow God.

The Whited Sepulchre said...

Heretic !
Infidel !

Nick M said...

Allen, not bad for a Septic, not bad at all.

"reet" is Geordie (NE England) for "right". As in "Katrina made a reet mess of New Orleans". I could post entireluy in Geordie and you'd find it totally incomprehensible. Geordie is a very difficult accent to do and done badly it sounds like you're from Jamaica which is odd. It also has a lot of unique terms borrowed from norwegian and Scots and some (such as "Geordie" itself)are things that people are a bit vague on. If you want to know more I suggest you buy Viz.

Keyed-up and on it's rims means abandoned and I got the phrase from a Blondie song. The keyed-up part refers I think to keying the car - scratching down the side with a key. Frequently done in supermarket car parks if someone nabs a spot you've had your eye on. Brits don't really do road-rage but we do parking-irate very well. We are after all a very small country.

I have a theory. I actually am beginning to believe that the US is now importing more language from the UK than vice-versa. And this is because our TV is doing well over there and the 'net. A few years ago the Simpson's used the word "wanker" and it slipped under the radar. I don't think it would anymore. I dunno. I've never really been confused by US English and I tend to think that the differences between UK and US English are over-played. The one puzzler is "bathrooms". Restaurants and bars in America have them and we just have "toilets". They also have "restrooms" which is perhaps even more confusing. Other than that and the fact that I find certain southern black accents utterly baffling I seem to operate OK in the USA. Actually the Southern Black accent thing only seems to apply to obese female clerks in petrol stations but it does apply to all of them. Buying petrol in Alabama is a strange ordeal.

In fact culturally we are very similar to the US. Scratch that. They're very similar to us. Apart from in sport. US sports seem to have been invented entirely for the purpose of statistics. I once watched a football game and they got a bloody tape-measure out at one point. The sooner the US discovers the joys of football (not football) and rugby and joins the civilised world the better. Baseball looks interesting but it's bloody complicated. There's so many numbers up on the telly that you think you've become a commodities broker or something.

That and God. Americans still believe in God. We by and large gave that one up donkey's years back. I suspect our religious-types decamped to the USA and, if truth be told, us English have never been to pious. If a British politician talked about God as much as the average American one does then they'd be considered unhinged. It's not so much that we're more atheistical it's more just irrelevant and with that bearded loon as Archbish of Canterbury it's becoming increasingly surreal. I knew a CofE vicar once who was a balls-out atheist. But he was a good fund-raiser and the church was very well looked after so he wasn't sacked. Well not until he ran away with another woman and so did his wife. That was a while back. In the modern church I doubt you can be defrocked for anything less than holding a peadophilic satanic orgy in the vestry.

I dunno. I mean I dated an American for 2 1/2 years and I feel very comfortable there (once you're past the TSA jerks anyway).

I have an amusing story about them. Ft Lauderdale airport was chaos what with the ceremonial X-raying of shoes. Anyway, no liquids on the plane and all that. And some fella hands oiver a half-drunk can of Guinness to the TSA bird who then finishes it off for him! Anyway. I get my laptop X-rayed. It was a Thinkpad R40. The lady behind me also has a Thinkpad R40 and in the chaos we almost get each other's. But for the fact mine has a UK keyboard and hers had a US keyboard she would have wandered off with a load of pictures of Key West and I would have had her Powerpoint presentation (she was clearly flying on business) and neither of us would have been happy campers.

God bless the TSA. Motto: Making flying a grim and bewildering ordeal. I hate flying. It's moderately less awful in Europe.

Nick M said...

Allen, not bad for a Septic, not bad at all.

"reet" is Geordie (NE England) for "right". As in "Katrina made a reet mess of New Orleans". I could post entireluy in Geordie and you'd find it totally incomprehensible. Geordie is a very difficult accent to do and done badly it sounds like you're from Jamaica which is odd. It also has a lot of unique terms borrowed from norwegian and Scots and some (such as "Geordie" itself)are things that people are a bit vague on. If you want to know more I suggest you buy Viz.

Keyed-up and on it's rims means abandoned and I got the phrase from a Blondie song. The keyed-up part refers I think to keying the car - scratching down the side with a key. Frequently done in supermarket car parks if someone nabs a spot you've had your eye on. Brits don't really do road-rage but we do parking-irate very well. We are after all a very small country.

I have a theory. I actually am beginning to believe that the US is now importing more language from the UK than vice-versa. And this is because our TV is doing well over there and the 'net. A few years ago the Simpson's used the word "wanker" and it slipped under the radar. I don't think it would anymore. I dunno. I've never really been confused by US English and I tend to think that the differences between UK and US English are over-played. The one puzzler is "bathrooms". Restaurants and bars in America have them and we just have "toilets". They also have "restrooms" which is perhaps even more confusing. Other than that and the fact that I find certain southern black accents utterly baffling I seem to operate OK in the USA. Actually the Southern Black accent thing only seems to apply to obese female clerks in petrol stations but it does apply to all of them. Buying petrol in Alabama is a strange ordeal.

In fact culturally we are very similar to the US. Scratch that. They're very similar to us. Apart from in sport. US sports seem to have been invented entirely for the purpose of statistics. I once watched a football game and they got a bloody tape-measure out at one point. The sooner the US discovers the joys of football (not football) and rugby and joins the civilised world the better. Baseball looks interesting but it's bloody complicated. There's so many numbers up on the telly that you think you've become a commodities broker or something.

That and God. Americans still believe in God. We by and large gave that one up donkey's years back. I suspect our religious-types decamped to the USA and, if truth be told, us English have never been to pious. If a British politician talked about God as much as the average American one does then they'd be considered unhinged. It's not so much that we're more atheistical it's more just irrelevant and with that bearded loon as Archbish of Canterbury it's becoming increasingly surreal. I knew a CofE vicar once who was a balls-out atheist. But he was a good fund-raiser and the church was very well looked after so he wasn't sacked. Well not until he ran away with another woman and so did his wife. That was a while back. In the modern church I doubt you can be defrocked for anything less than holding a peadophilic satanic orgy in the vestry.

I dunno. I mean I dated an American for 2 1/2 years and I feel very comfortable there (once you're past the TSA jerks anyway).

I have an amusing story about them. Ft Lauderdale airport was chaos what with the ceremonial X-raying of shoes. Anyway, no liquids on the plane and all that. And some fella hands oiver a half-drunk can of Guinness to the TSA bird who then finishes it off for him! Anyway. I get my laptop X-rayed. It was a Thinkpad R40. The lady behind me also has a Thinkpad R40 and in the chaos we almost get each other's. But for the fact mine has a UK keyboard and hers had a US keyboard she would have wandered off with a load of pictures of Key West and I would have had her Powerpoint presentation (she was clearly flying on business) and neither of us would have been happy campers.

God bless the TSA. Motto: Making flying a grim and bewildering ordeal. I hate flying. It's moderately less awful in Europe.

Lazy Slacker said...

Wow. I clicked on my website today and noticed a funny number at the bottom. It was over 2,000. I thought, "that's peculiar, I typically only get 20-40 hits a day". Then I saw you linked my pascal's wager up to reddit.com and my jaw dropped! 1500 visitors in one day lol.