Vocab Rules for Americans in London

These are some words and phrases you probably shouldn’t use if you are, like me, and American living in London (or anywhere, really):

  1. Fancy – as in ‘Oh I really fancy that guy’ or ‘Would you fancy a cup of tea?’ The word you want here is like.  You may only use fancy if describing things, you know, as an adjective.  IE. Feasts, faces, men
  2. Bloody – Unless discussing a wound or a Mary, you will sound like a big poser when you say this.  This is a lesson I strongly wish someone had taught me when I was 17 and came home from my European vacation calling everything bloody this and bloody that and bloody hell  and blah blah blah.  It was a bad idea.  Learn from my mistakes.
  3. Wanker – Everyone will laugh at you.  Your clipped midwestern r’s and nasal vowels will do you no favours where this insult is concerned and you will just sound ridiculous which will rob the word of it’s power to insult.
  4. Innit – Unles you are being facetious it will just sound wrong, even with facetiousness it is somthing of a stretch

This is not an exhaustive list, but it is a good start. 

It’s a fine line between accepting the slang of your adopted country and sounding like an idiot.  A fine line that I must walk every day.  Please, I beg you, learn from my experiences.



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3 responses to “Vocab Rules for Americans in London

  1. hahahahahahaha!!

    Also – non-American English speakers: please don’t try to say “y’all.”

  2. What about, “Fancy meeting you here?” Just curious, since an actual British person said that to me a few days ago.

  3. carolynintheuk

    stacy that’s borderline. the British person can definitely say it, and i think maybe southerners can get away with it. and maybe midwesterners so long as they say it in a goofy homer simpson faux english accent, maybe

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