1. Fail to know how to make a proper cuppa.
Tea does not come with hot milk. Why on earth is that so difficult to understand?
2. Fail to buy your round.
If you dodge your turn on a round, we are instantly offended and you are no longer welcome into the fold. In fact, just get out of the pub. You cheapskate.
3. Scream that you just love our accent.
“OH EM GEEEE, your accent is SO sexy! I LOVE an English accent!” Er… which English accent are you talking about here? The Brummie drawl or cheerie Geordie? Cockney or Cornish? Somerset or Home Counties? Y’see, there isn’t really such a thing as an English accent as it changes from region to region, county to county, even town to town.
4. Use American spelling and pronunciation.
Seriously, why must you bastardise the language we gave you? We prefer S’s to Z’s and yes, that U does need to be in the word colour. And for the record, aluminium is pronounced as it is spelt: al-u-min-ium. JEEZ.
5. Think we’re all straight-lace and stiff-upper-lip.
Ok, so we may be a little cold and take some time to warm to anyone new, but straight out of Downton we are not. We love sex and we love the word fuck and we absolutely love to get pissed and take our clothes off. Our sense of humour is dark, sarcastic and pretty questionable at best. We’re good at sex scandals and sniffing cocaine off a stripper’s tits as well as using the c-word so much it doesn’t mean anything anymore anyway. Prudish, prim and proper are words reserved only for Queenie herself, thanks.
6. Call football ‘soccer.’
We invented the damn sport, I think we know what it’s called.
7. Queue incorrectly.
It seems that people outside of England just don’t know how to queue in an orderly fashion. The way we pay for food, get on a train, wait for shop openings, go to the cinema and even wait to get into a club is to stand one behind the other until it is our turn. We will not tolerate pushing in and you will be told off with a stern sigh and mutter of disapproval if you go so far as to dishonour this great tradition of our little island.
8. Compliment us. I dare you.
We can’t handle someone saying something nice to us and we’ll get awkward if you do. We show affection by being mean to our friends rather than telling them how much we appreciate them or how much weight they’ve lost or even how nice their dress is. It’s just easier to call them a dick, tell them they’re fat and ask why they’re wearing too much makeup.
9. Ask if we’re from London.
No. Most of us are neither rich enough nor stupid enough to part with our wages in exchange for a tiny, filthy apartment in the Big Smoke.
10. Criticise our cuisine
Hold the freakin’ phone. Jamie Oliver, Gordon Ramsey, Nigella Lawson, Heston Blumenthal, Rick Stein, Delia Smith and Ainsley Harriet all came from the well-baked, perfectly spiced loins of England. We have roast dinners and fish and chips, we love curry so much that Tikka Masala is home-grown and well, sticky toffee pudding swimming in hot custard is just to die for. So what if our food is a little bit stodgy? It’s cold and damp here, we need the carbs.
11. Stand on the left.
Please. If you must stay stationary when exiting the London Underground, park your lazy arse on the right. Thanks.
Photo: Vadim Timoshkin