Or rather Sco’ish for beginners.
If one is ever to find oneself in Scotland, even for a day or two, one will never get anywhere if one does not know how to speak Scottish.
Now you may think Scotsmen speak English, this is a common belief. But you are mistaken. 99% of Scotsmen will not understand English, American or Canadian English. If you travel to Scotland, there will be a massive language barrier. If you speak to a Scotsman in ‘normal’ English, you will appear foreign. And you do not want to be foreign in Scotland. It is highly dangerous.
For example, you may walk up to a strange Scotsman and ask him, ‘excuse me, kind sir, could you tell me the time please?’
The Scotsman will stare at you, eyebrows twitching in confusion. What you really should have said is this; ‘awright min, fits the time?’
By learning a few basic Scottish words, one can make several sentences.
Let us begin with ‘hello’. Now, there is one word in Scotland for ‘hello’ and although some of use the word ‘hello’ it is more likely that one will say, ‘awright’.
Hello = Awright (click 'awright' in Mychingo at the bottom of the sidebar for an example)
Now this word ‘awright’ is in fact asking ‘all right?’ or, ‘are you all right?’ But in Scotland, no one ever answers the question. Whatever you do, do not answer ‘awright’ with ‘yes, thanks I’m fine’. The correct response to a Scotsman's saluations should simply be ‘awright min’, ‘min’ being ‘man’.
Man = Min
The word ‘min’ can be inserted anywhere in a sentence or at the end of a sentence. It is perfectly acceptable in Scotland to repeat the word several times closely together.
As you can gather from the translation of the sentence ‘what is the time’, the word for what is ‘fit’ or, in some regions, 'whit’.
What = fit / whit
As we have now learned the Scottish words for ‘hello’, ‘man’ and ‘what’, we can now continue with another common Scottish greeting.
‘Awright min, fit lyk?’
There is one new word in this sentence that one must learn in order to be considered as a polite, self respecting human being in Scotland.
The expression of ‘fit lyk’ literally means ‘what like’, which is interpreted as ‘how are you?’
How are you? = fit lyk?
It is important to note that although this is an interrogation, one must not raise the tone of voice at the end. Keep the tone of voice low. Practice speaking from the very back of your throat, in an almost threatening pitch.
Hello, how are you? = ‘Awright, fit lyk?’ (click 'fit lyk' in the sidebar for example)
If you want to really show off your knowledge of the Scottish language, one can insert the word ‘min’ a number of times in this simple greeting. Example; ‘Min! Awright min. Min, whit lyk min?’
One correct response to this question would be, ‘aye, nae bad’.
It is common knowledge that ‘aye’ means ‘yes’.
Yes = aye
The word for ‘not’ is ‘nae’.
Not bad = nae bad
Yes, not bad = aye, nae bad (Click 'aye, nae bad' for an example)
Again, practice inserting the word ‘min’ into this statement. Ex; ‘Aye min, nae bad min’.
Be careful not to mistake the word ‘nae’ for ‘no’, which, in Scottish is always ‘naw’.
No = Naw
If you would like to add the word ‘thank you’, one must be careful to say ‘cheers’ and never ‘thank you’ as you will appear as an Englishman, which is also dangerous in Scotland.
Thank you = Cheers
Another important note to make is that ‘cheers’ is very often followed by ‘min’.
And I shall finish today’s lesson by teaching a very common Scottish expression. This term can describe a scoundrel, rascal or villain. The phrase is ‘baw bag’, literally meaning ball bag.
Villain = baw bag
Again, keep the tone of voice low when using this term, stressing the first syllable; baw bag.
Of course it is common and popular in Scotland to alternate the word ‘bag’ with ‘sack’.
Practice expressing this phrase, alternating between ‘baw bag’ and ‘baw sack’.
Friday, June 08, 2007
Or rather Sco’ish for beginners.