Ten reasons British people don’t make sense


1. We will rarely tell you an outright no or explain we don’t want to do something. To do so would be considered impolite, so instead we might say ‘maybe’, ‘perhaps’ or ‘we’ll see’. These are all British ways of saying ‘no’.

2. We will apologise for everything, even things that aren’t our fault like someone stepping on our foot. We will say ‘sorry’ but actually mean ‘die in hell you foot-stomping fiend!’

3. We have a deep-rooted superiority complex but it can be hard to tell because we spend so much time apologising for being British. We may be fiercely nationalistic but would never admit it, and if anyone does admit it the rest of us will assume that person is probably racist!

4. We get really upset by the idea that foreigners think British food is so terrible. We have great restaurants and culinary offerings in the UK. We introduced the world to sandwiches, pies, fish and chips and make awesome roast dinners. Not to mention deep-fried mars bars, actually we probably shouldn’t mention deep fried mars bars, I don’t think they help our image. Aside from these traditional offerings we have also some great culinary interpretations and fusions of other nations’ national dishes, the UK has some truly amazing restaurants. I will accept criticism from Italians (whose inventions make up about 80% of my regular diet) and the French (because they are so precious about food that although its hard to think of amazing French dishes off the top of your head, it’s probably not worth arguing about). I will not accept criticism from Americans (hamburgers, tasty but unvaried), Swiss (all national dishes are combinations of cheese and potatoes, again tasty but hardly inspiring) or any other European nation.

5. British people don’t like ‘z’s’ very much. I’d like to apologise to my American spellcheck for thinking I am misspelling ‘apologise’ by not using a ‘z’ but I won’t use a ‘z’ because my spellcheck is wrong and I’m right.

6. We pretend to be interested in things we aren’t. We may give the impression we are fascinated in your experiences at your model road sign club (no offence model road-signers) or on your latest pirate-spotting cruise off the coasts of Somalia. Our false enthusiasm my in fact be so convincing you could be forgiven for thinking we actually mean it and are not only interested but want to join the model road sign club or book our own pirate cruise. If we are genuine we will ask you point blank ‘can I join your road sign club?’ If we say, things like ‘wow, that sounds really interesting, how would I go about joining a model road-sign club?’, we don’t mean it. This is just politeness/a ruse to keep you talking so that we can zone out and think about more interesting things like the best way to create your own zombie make-up out of some toilet tissue and PVA glue.

7. We pretend to be interested in people we aren’t. For example we may meet someone briefly at a partner’s work event and they invite us to be their friend on Facebook, which we politely accept. They may send us the occasional message, we will politely respond to and this may provoke further conversation. They may suggest meeting for a coffee and we will reply ‘maybe’, meaning ‘no’. Mostly we are thinking, why is this person still talking to me? If I’d known they meant to establish a genuine connection I’d have pretended to have a seizure when they first asked me to pass the twiglets.

8. We aren’t great at expressing ourselves. The standard response to the question ‘how are you?’ will invariably be ‘I’m fine’. It will be the same reply if we happen to be on fire whilst fighting off a zombie hoard and suffering from a cold, which may or may not be the first symptom of something turning us into a flesh-eating virus. Similarly you’d get the same response if we have just opened the door to discover the entire apartment is filled with free chocolate and cash.

9. We aren’t great at small talk and have a tendency to talk about the weather far more than can ever be necessary. We say banal things like ‘it’s a bit grey outside’, which anyone with eyes has probably already noticed. It’s about as interesting and as easy to initiate a conversation as saying ‘I have a nose attached to my face’.

10. We are still rather attached to the archaic idea of our Monarchy, even if we are a bit embarrassed about this and can’t provide any logical reasons whatsoever as to why we should still have, and continue to encourage former colonies to have, a Queen. She does have a lovely sparkly crown though. Shiny.


Ten Reasons to Just Keep Going


(when you’d rather curl up in a ball and sleep until it all goes away again)

1. Sadly hibernation isn’t an option. Unless you are a bear. If you are a bear, then firstly kudos on your unacknowledged reading skill and secondly, I suggest you find yourself a nice cosy cave and sit this one out.

2. You cling on to a blind, and in no way scientifically substantiated view, that everything will be alright at the end of the month/once you have won the lottery/after you’ve reached retirement/etc.

3. It’s easier than stopping to acknowledge you have no time to stop and shouldn’t have wasted precious moments stopping to think about this.

4. Consequences of stopping might prove detrimental to career, health and relationships. Some might argue not stopping might prove detrimental to the very same things but I haven’t time to stop and think about that.

5. The vague memory of when you didn’t have to make yourself keep going motivates you to keep going until you reach a point where you don’t have to again. Crystal clear? Peachy!

6. Everyone around you is also keeping going. If you stop to ask them why and then they stop to think about this and stop someone else to ask them why, you could effectively cause the entire universe to grind to a halt and then where would we be?

7. You secretly suspect that hints of whinging about not having enough time is something that people who have enough time to whinge about do and that those who really don’t have enough time just get on with it. So unless you want people to think you are simply a pretend busy person it’s best not to say anything.

8. You can use this as an excuse to reward yourself frequently. For example ‘just keep going for another X hours/until so many words have been written/everyone else has gone home’ and then as a treat you can watch another episode of a trashy tv show/have a cat-napping break (cats optional)/make brownies (and then use next just keep going until X break to eat brownies). Whatever floats your boat.

9. You can’t go back, standing still gets tedious so might as well keep going.

10. You hope if you use the phrase often enough and repeat constantly as a mantra to yourself the slogan will either be adopted by a major brand for which you will be paid millions or people will think you are crazy and no-one will ever sit next to you on the bus again. It’s a win-win situation.

just keep going - bp image