Come here Rude Boy, Boy, and Explain Your “English”.

Australia has the Macquarie Dictionary. The United States has Webster’s Dictionary. And in Great Britain, they rely on the Oxford English Dictionary. These are renowned dictionaries used as authorities for the standardisation of spelling and definitions of vernacular within these countries.

However, in London, there appears to be an entirely different dictionary that people aged 21 to 32 use. It’s not a new language, as the words are the same as ordinary English words. Deriving from Jamaican immigrants and emanating to much of the Gen-Y populace, these “Rude-Boy” Londoners take ordinary English-language words, and give them entirely different meanings, creating an entirely confusing dialect.



Ordinary: to permit, let one have, grant as one’s right.

London: to forget, ignore, prevent, or disallow.


Geraint: The girl was all over me. She was mingin’!

Adam: You need to allow the bitch. Hard.


Bait (Bate)

Ordinary: food or food substitute used as a lure to bait fish, animals or humans in fishing and hunting.

London: something that is blatant or obvious.


Geraint: I am not saying that everyone on welfare is lazy. But it is common knowledge that there are some people who just can’t be bothered getting jobs.

Sophie: You are such a right-wing fascist.

Geraint: It is so bate that you’re an Oxbridge grad.


Ordinary: without covering or clothing, nude.

London: a lot of, very, extremely.


Geraint: I had a killer weekend.

Sophie: I bet it was bare trashy.

Geraint: Totes. I was at Ministry on Saturday night. Only got three hours sleep over three days. I am bare tired, man.


Ordinary: an exchange of light, playful, good-natured teasing.

London: something that was fun, great or hilariously outlandish; often contracted to “bants”.


Drew: How was Pamplona?

Adam: At the time, I felt invincible! But since watching the video of the run that my friend took, I’ve since realised that my ass was about 30 cm away from being gored by the bull’s horn!

Drew: Bants!


Ordinary: a current of air, wind.

London: lies, bull shit.


Sophie: Do you like my new skirt from The Kooples?

Drew: Yeah it’s really nice… you capitalist pig.

Sophie: What?

Geraint: You love to think you’re a communist, but you have it too good in the contemporary society.

Sophie: What are you talking about?

Drew: You’re a total materialist. Communists don’t buy at The Kooples.

Sophie: You guys are chatting bare breeze.


Ordinary: an attempt to pluralise butter (the fatty portion of milk, separating as a soft, whitish or yellowish solid when cream is agitated or churned) by someone who is unintelligent or had a poor education.

London: ugly.


Drew: She has been stuffing her face with chips for hours.

Sophie: I know, it’s embarrassing. Poor thing.

Geraint: And she really can’t afford to, either. She’s already pretty butters.


Ordinary: short, sharp sounds characteristic of birds and insects.

London: to chat up, woo, or court another person.


Drew: Did you get me a coffee?

Sophie: Sorry, I only got one for myself. I didn’t have any money.

Drew: How did you get one for yourself if you didn’t have any money.

Sophie: I chirpsed the barrista again. Hard. I think I’ve gotta lay off for a while otherwise he might think I’m actually interested.


Ordinary: a light, thin, French pancake, often served with Nutella or strawberries. Spelt like when I failed my French class that one time.

London: sneakers, trainers.


Drew: Check out my new G-Star high-tops. They only cost thirty-five quid at the Selfridges Sale. Bargain.

Geraint: Those are proper creps, man.



Ordinary: (1) Lacking in moisture, not wet. (2) shrewd, laconic or sarcastic humour or wit.

London: dull, boring, annoying or unfunny.


Sophie: This. Work. Is. Killing. Me.

Geraint: I’m bare bored.

Sophie: How long until we can go home?

Drew: 5 hours.

Sophie and Geraint: Dry.


Ordinary: (1) in good physical condition (2) suitable or appropriate.

London: attractive, good-looking.


Adam: Does anyone want to get a coffee?

Sophie: I’ll come if you’re going to Bean About Town.

Adam: That’s so far away.

Drew: She just wants to chirps the Turkish barrista.

Sophie: He is so fit!


Ordinary: not soft, solid, firm.

London: very much, a lot.


Drew: I get the feeling that Marcel hates me. Do you think I will get fired?

Geraint: Nah. I’ve got it all sorted.

Drew: Oh yeah? How do you figure?

Geraint: I have been chirpsing Marcel. Hard. If you stay close to me, Marcel will keep renewing your contract for months.


Ordinary: characterised by intense agitation, excitement or confusion.

London: good.


Drew: I’m seeing Radiohead in Bilbao!

Geraint: That is hectic, bro!


Ordinary: having considerable linear extent in space, or duration in time.

London: boring, dull (often interchangeable with “dry”).


Drew: Are you guys ready to go home?

Sophie: I just need to go to the toilet first.

Geraint: But you always take forever!

Sophie: I’ll be five minutes.

(Sophie leaves).

Drew: She’s gonna be 20 minutes, mate.

Geraint: This is bare long.


Ordinary: (1) correct, fitting, appropriate. (2) conforming to established standards of behaviour and manners.

London: (1) very, a lot. (2) excellent.

Example (1):

Drew: A recruiter just called and asked if I wanted to work on the weekend for 8 quid an hour.

Geraint: He is proper stupid.

Example (2):

Drew: I bought us a whole chicken from Waitrose for lunch.

Geraint: Proper!


Ordinary: (1) secure from risk, danger or injury (2) a steel box for the secure storage of valuable goods.

London: good or trustworthy (usually used in relation to a person).


Geraint: Oh man, I am coming down with the worst cold. I need to blow my nose.

Drew: Sophie gave us all colds. She’s dead to me. Here, have a tissue.

Geraint: You are safe, bruv. Cheers.



Ordinary: to have looked at with one’s eyes (or with one’s mind, if you believe in that crap).

London: I concur.


Geraint: I can’t stand looking at his face any more.

Adam: Hearing his voice feels like getting knifed in my spine.

Drew: And he is proper butters.

Adam: Seen.



Ordinary: that act of forcefully evacuating saliva from one’s mouth.

London: talking.


Geraint: So there was this time in St Albans when …

Drew: Is this story going to revolve around you getting into some kind of fight?

Geraint: Stop spitting shit, Drew.

Drew: Well?

Geraint: It’s about my grandma.

Drew: So no then?


Ordinary: (1) a symbol used to mark an item on a listthat has been completed or is correct (2) a small, blood sucking arachnid.

London: good-looking, attractive (interchangeable with fit).


Drew: I need to buy a new suit. Where should I go?

Geraint: House of Fraser have some reasonable ones.

Drew: Nah. House of Fraser is butters. I was thinking about having a look in Selfridges.

Sophie: Yeah, you should get a Duchamp suit. You would look tick!


Ordinary: (1) good, satisfactory, sound (2) a hole, bored into the Earth to obtain water.

London: very, a lot (interchangeable with “bare”).


Sophie: Have you read this so-called article by Samantha Brick?

Drew: Is that the chick who reckons she has a terrible life because she is beautiful?

Sophie: Yes. It is such sexist, anti-feminist wank.

Geraint: Yeah, plus she is well butters.


Ordinary: used in birthday cards and with instant messaging to signify a kiss.

London: this is the end of my text and I am just letting you know that I have nothing else to say.


Drew: Sorry wont B in today. Ill.

Marcel: No problem. Hope its not serious.

Drew: Just cold. Back tmw.

Marcel: Okay x

Drew: Did U just txt me a kiss? WTF!


**All pictures by ME

3 thoughts on “Come here Rude Boy, Boy, and Explain Your “English”.

  1. And that is why I stayed home for the olympics. I would have offended too many well meaning people. I am proper stupid. Did I do that right? That could be offensive if I put a comma between proper and stupid.

    • It would be proper offensive if you put the comma between proper and stupid, however I feel like it would also be in the Rude Boy spirit and therefore totally bants.

  2. Pingback: Inebriated Epiphanies « Ex-Patria

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