Silly me. I misidentified the birds in the garden at the weekend. Thank you to Christian from Hertford for kindly pointing out that they were redwings. Apparently, they’re now on Folly Island.
Professor Saifuddin Soz
Following my fulmination about ‘laters’, thank you to my friend Franklin for pointing out that the term ‘soz’ (meaning ‘sorry’) is even more infuriating than ‘laters’. I agree.
Even more ruffling is the usage ‘soz lol’, meaning – ‘I’m sorry but not really. In fact, I’m laughing.’
Please note that the photo of Professor Saifuddin Soz (a politician from Kashmir) has no connection with the irritating term ‘soz’ whatsoever. I just found him while Googling the word and thought he had a friendly face.
Soz if this caused any confusion.
When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child.
Actually, I didn’t. When I was a child, I didn’t like children. I preferred pets, inanimate objects and adults – in that order. And I wasn’t taught Babyspeak, so I used to correct grown-ups from my pram.
‘Would you like a choccy biccy?’ asked one unsuspecting old lady when I was two.
‘No thanks,’ I replied. ‘But I would like a chocolate biscuit.’ True story.
I must have been unbearable. I’m surprised my parents didn’t give me away to a passing linguist.
To this day, I find hypocoristic forms really irritating. I refuse to eat sarnies and never knowingly give pressies at Crimble.
And so you can imagine my response when someone at the gym said ‘laters’ to me this afternoon.
Laters? Laters??? According to a reliable source, ‘laters’ is derived from diminutive forms such as ‘Gramps’, ‘Wills’, ‘Babs’ or ‘Bolls’ (OK – I plead guilty to that one). But this preposterous word should no more be sported by a person over 25 than a backward-facing baseball cap.
Such infantilist Cutespeak even applies to decades nowadays. Just when I thought we’d escaped from the Noughties or Naughties, we were plunged headfirst into the Tennies, Tenties, Teenies or Tweenies.
Stop this childishness now, or I’ll scweam and scweam until I’m sick.