The artist that is Dan of recently wrote an interesting article about how he’s sometimes an ignorant traveller, as no doubt we all are at times.

Being British, I think its generally (and wrongly) anticipated that wherever we go, someone somewhere within our chosen destination will at least have a very basic grasp of the English language.  Its a terrible assumption, but sometimes when you’re lost you chance your arm with seeing if your English tonge is understood … and a large proportion of the time it actually is.  Being a brit is abroad is unfairly easy at times.

So English is a common language around the world, but when our foriegn friends learn English, do they factor in regional accents and phrases.  I bet for the most part not, I cant say I did when I was learning French.

Anyway, my point and the point of this post is that if you’re heading to London for the Olympics this summer, prepare yourself  as you’re going to be exposed to a very unique style of the English language.  If you’re heading for the Olympic Park your’re heading for East London, and if you’re heading for East London you heading for the land of Cockney Rhyming Slang.  Confused?  You will be!  Watch and learn …

So do you get it? Simple eh?  Reckon you could understand it at a conversational level?   … Nah me neither, I find it difficult and I’m a Londoner!  So if you’re in east London for the Olympics this summer, or anytime really and you hear any of the words below, they might not mean what you think.  Let this lists act as a very small guide.

General Terms

  Adam and Eve Believe Would you Adam and Eve it?
  Alligator Later See you later alligator.
  Apples and Pears Stairs Up the apples, first door on your right.
  Army and Navy Gravy Pass the army, will you?
  Bacon and Eggs Legs She has amazing bacons.
  Barnet Fair Hair I’m going to have my barnet cut.
  Bees and Honey Money Hand over the bees.
  Boat Race Face He’s got a nasty scar on his boat
  Bubble Bath Laugh He’s having a bubble if he think’s I’m paying that much
  Crust of Bread Head Use your crust, lad.
  Loaf of Bread Head Think about it; use your loaf.
  Mince Pies Eyes What beautiful minces.
  Pen and Ink Stink Pooh! It pens a bit in here.
  Rabbit Talk I don’t know what he’s rabbiting on about.
  Raspberry Tart Fart I can smell a raspberry.
  Ruby Murry Curry Fancy a ruby?
  Sky Rocket Pocket  Have you got a pound in your sky
  Trouble and Strife Wife The trouble’s been shopping again.
  Uncle Bert Shirt I’m ironing my Uncle.
  Weasel and Stoat Coat Where’s my weasel?
  Whistle and flute Suit  Are you going to wear your whistle?


Money – (Bees and Honey)

  Grand £1000
  Monkey £500
  Ton £100
  Pony £25
  Score £20
  Tenner £10
  Diver £5
  Squid/nugget £1