- Books, Literature, and Writing
Americans Do Not Speak English
If you’ve spent any amount of time talking to a person from the United Kingdom and you are from America or vice versa, it soon becomes evident that we do not speak the same language. I’ve seen arguments in forums between people on either side of the big pond due to silly misunderstandings because of language barriers.
Because of this I believe change is needed. Instead of saying we speak English in America we need to call it what it is: American.
Here are a few differences that many aren’t aware of:
In America we put things like groceries and jumper cables in the trunk of our car but in England they call this a boot.
Americans call the cover on the front of our car that protects the engine and battery a hood but in England it is the bonnet.
In America if someone is pissed they are angry. In England if someone is pissed they are drunk.
In America during a heavy rain we might say it is raining cats and dogs but in England it is pissing. They seem to have a thing for piss.
If someone in England says they knocked someone up it means they went to that person’s home and knocked on the door. In America knocked up means a man got a woman pregnant. I’m sure a recent film confused a few English citizens.
A fanny in America is a person’s buttocks; in England it is a woman’s genitals. As you might imagine they find our fanny packs quite amusing.
When writing a statement in America we end a sentence with a period but in England it's called a "full stop."
I had no idea what some of these American words were.
In England a fag is a cigarette; in America it is a derogatory term for a homosexual.
English call an eraser a rubber while in the US a rubber is a condom. A condom in England is called a Johnny and a john in America is a toilet. You see how things can quickly get out of hand.
In America if we say, “we are rooting for you,” it means we are for your team or we hope you do well but in England rooting means having sexual intercourse. Brings a whole new meaning to the term, “rooting for you.”
In England a biscuit is what Americans call a cookie and a scone is a biscuit. And for you southern boys and girls you can’t get biscuits and gravy in the UK and if you ask for it you will get some interesting looks. Why on earth would you want some white sauce on your cookie?
Here in America some fast food restaurants started the trend of “biggie” meals meaning a larger burger and more fries but in England a biggie means a bowel movement.
Another meaning of the word “biggie” is a man’s erection, so you can imagine the amused look on their face when they come to the US and are asked if they want to biggie their meal.
Pants in the US are trousers in the UK. Panties are knickers and garter belt are suspenders.
In America a bum is a vagrant/homeless person but in England it is your butt.
What Americans call French fries the English call chips and they eat them with a fork and knife instead of their fingers. Actually, those silly English eat everything with a fork and knife with both in each hand throughout the meal; unless they are eating Chinese food, which they always eat with chopsticks.
In America if we say, “suck it up,” we mean be strong or don’t whine about something but in England it has a sexual meaning. I’m sure you can figure that one out.
In England if you ask for a restroom they will think you are tired. If however you need to relieve yourself you should ask for the loo. This is short for Waterloo a maker of toilets. Lavatory is a more formal request for the men’s or lady’s room.
A couple readers commented that "loo" is an informal term and in public most English refer to it as a toilet. In America we call them restroom, men's room or ladies room in public. Saying toilet is thought of as uncouth in the U.S.
On the other hand when English come to America and ask for the loo people here assume they are looking for a man named Lou and need his last name in order to help you find him.
In America if you are stuffed you are full of food but in England if you are stuffed you are pregnant.
In America some might say they are going out for a puff, meaning to smoke but in England a puff or poof is a gay man.
Slang for policeman in some areas of England is horny and, well you know what it means here in the states.
Urban Dictionary for those of us that need a little help.