Monday, 29 March 2010

Overheard Conversation # 13

New Feature! Added Analysis! (Poo, Gosh, &c., &c.)

Location: Queue in the inaccurately named Fast Checkout Lane of supermarket.
Characters: Man in steel-capped boots, man in yellow hard-hat - both in their mid 30s.

Boots: So I turns round and goes to the boss I'm not 'aving tha'.
Hard Hat: Yer never!
Boots: And he went Well it's in yer contract, lad.
Hard Hat: Right!
Boots: Then I turns round and goes I've never even seen a bloody contract!
Hard Hat: 'e tried to pull that one on me. I wasn' 'avin' none of it.
Boots: So then I goes None of the Lads'll be 'appy 'bout this, Boss.
Hard Hat: Bloody right. I turns round to Joe and warned 'im Don't be working too fast on tha' wall, kid.
Boots: Then 'e turns round and goes We'll see wha' the Site Manager 'as to say.

And so on. Reader, I was dizzy with the amount of turning around they'd been doing. More pirouetting than a ballerina en pointe - and not nimble looking chaps by any means.

Teenagers - stay with me; all will become clear. Teenagers: we feed them, clothe them, put roofs over their heads, send them to school, straighten their teeth and encourage them to bathe occasionally. They are hardly ill-used if the only joy we get out of this arrangement is annoying and embarrassing them.

One delicious way to annoy teenagers is based on the above conversation:

Banshee: I wasn't happy with Riviera this afternoon. She's that stuck-up cow whose mum's on Hollyoaks. So I went -
Ma: Where? Went where, darling?
Banshee: I didn't go anywhere. Listen. So she turned round -
Ma: In a full circle or only ninety degrees?
Banshee: Are you on something? So I went -
Ma: You left the room?
Banshee: No! I goes -
Ma: Where did you go?
Banshee: I didn't go anywhere! LISTEN. So Riviera goes -
Ma: Riviera left the room?

At this point the Banshee will scream and storm out in High Dudgeon. The Ma smiles (like La Gioconda - subtly satisfied), flicks off the T.V. and picks up Saturday's Times Jumbo Cryptic Crossword which she's been staring at for three days now, yet has still only managed to solve nine clues.

P.S. Blogger won't let me post a picture, and I'd found a very fetching ballerina to illustrate my point. Bah, Blogger, Bah!

P.P.S. O, how lovely. You're fixed again.


  1. so I turns round and says to you; you should of been on the Metropolitan Line between Barking and the Inner Circle years ago. Girls didn't need no sarky mums in them days, they was well good doing it and turning rahnd,on a Mondy mornin, when they was tellin' each other abaht what their boyfriends fought they was gonna get away wiv at the weekend.

    I spent many a long journey vastly entertained.

  2. I proper forgot the 'would ofs and should ofs'.

    I'm very close to Barking these days, Friko...

  3. I see Friko is getting in touch with her inner Lahndan teenager side at last.

    I like these overheard conversations. The best line I've heard recently is, 'So there I was, spread out on his dining room carpet.' Didn't hear the rest.

  4. I used to puzzle undergraduates whenever they made a statement that sounded like a question. "Yeah, like, I can't find this European Directive?"

    Ever patient and polite, I'd ask for clarification, "Are you telling me or asking me?"

    "What? Like, I'm telling you, aren't I?"

  5. @ Fran - my best overheard line was "Have you ever kicked a football and imagined it was a baby's head?"

    And THAT from an American Evangelist in Starbucks. I made notes all across my cryptic crossword, pretending to fill in the answers when really I was transcribing the coversation.

    Eventually, the A.E. twigged and I was treated to a Hard Stare.

    @ Martin - The Californian Question Mark Inflection... Hmmmm...

  6. Sorry, that should of course have been:

    The Californian Question Mark Inflection?


  7. You mean, like, it has a name? Like, I'm so behind?

  8. You inspired a whole separate post, Martin, though after such untoward exertion my chaise longue is calling ...

  9. Missed this one somehow, Moptop. Reassuring it is to hear that British youth have the same sloppy speech habits as Canadians. Although the 'turned 'round' isn't so familiar. I'll have to listen more carefully...

  10. Yesterday morning, a dairy farmer on Radio 4 'turned round' to the buyers at a well-known supermarket and 'went'.

    Well, I thought, no wonder your milk contract didn't get renewed if you 'turned round and went.' It was the height of bad manners. You should have FACED the buyers and SAID and then the matter would have been concluded to everyone's satisfaction.

  11. Realized I had already read this but hadn't seen your last comment....very funny!