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"March is a month of considerable frustration - it is so near spring and yet across a great deal of the country the weather is still so violent and changeable that outdoor activity seems light years away."
Thalassa Cruso
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How has England changed?

mheredgemheredge WordsmithHere and therePosts: 24,530 mod
Published over twenty years ago, Will Self wrote on how English culture was changing for the better. This article appeared in August 1994:

http://www.theguardian.com/books/2014/jan/17/will-self-valley-corn-dollies

Now twenty years later, Will Self has looked to see how things really did change. In particular, he never anticipated the impact of digital media. Both articles were published in the Guardian newspaper.

http://www.theguardian.com/books/2014/jan/17/how-has-england-changed-will-self?CMP=fb_gu
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Comments

  • LynneLynne Your Teacher HomePosts: 8,813 mod
    "... Englishness itself is a gastronomic affair." Probably why we so often end up talking about food in our sessions.
  • ProseyProsey Posts: 1,223 ✭✭✭✭
    I adore Will Self - fly-bedizened carcasses. :) We read this: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-17777556
    'The early works - the stuffed animals and fly-bedizened carcasses - retain a certain - albeit recherché - shock value, while the subsequent ones degenerate steadily to the condition of knocked-off merchandise, making the barrier between the gift shop and the exhibition space evaporate in a puff of consumerism.'
  • mheredgemheredge Wordsmith Here and therePosts: 24,530 mod
    I find it interesting seeing British remnants in strange places. This morning I saw an old fashioned British pillar box (still in use). There are still a few old colonial style buildings left in Sri Lanka too. But apart from that, I'm not sure Sri Lanka has kept it's Britishness as well as India has. Apart from both countries still driving on the right side of the road like the Brits.
  • LynneLynne Your Teacher HomePosts: 8,813 mod
    We have an old telephone box round the corner, that's been turned into a mini library. Yes, here in Germany. :)
  • ProseyProsey Posts: 1,223 ✭✭✭✭
    I don't think Self's style has changed. :)) 'His use of television to broadcast the absolute spiritual importance of a 'good death' was not far short of being Ciceronian. Only - I would argue - in England could this have taken place. His dryness, his self-possession, his honesty, his caustic wit in the face of extinction. Damn it all - his sang-froid (as with most quintessential English characteristics, only a French tag will do it justice) made me for a wrenching, choking second or two, proud to be English.'
  • mheredgemheredge Wordsmith Here and therePosts: 24,530 mod
    I find that I don't meet very many Brits travelling like I used to. Nowadays it seems to be mainly French, Germans, Dutch, Australians, Koreans and Chinese tourists that you meet everywhere (especially French).
  • HermineHermine Moderator Posts: 5,903 mod
    @Lynne - yes I have heard of those libaries. How does it function? Can you take books away as many as you want?
  • mheredgemheredge Wordsmith Here and therePosts: 24,530 mod
    In the rural areas of Britain they still operate mobile libraries, in a type of truck.
  • HelvioHelvio Posts: 1,860 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Marianne said:
    Apart from both countries still driving on the right side of the road like the Brits.
    Do you mean they still driving on the left side of the road? Isn't it, @mheredge?
  • mheredgemheredge Wordsmith Here and therePosts: 24,530 mod
    I meant 'correct' side of the road, @Helvio.
  • HelvioHelvio Posts: 1,860 ✭✭✭✭✭
    If they are on the left side, they aren't on the right side. :-\"
  • mheredgemheredge Wordsmith Here and therePosts: 24,530 mod
    Depends on your point of view @Hermine!
  • HermineHermine Moderator Posts: 5,903 mod
    @Marianne, I do assume you mean Helvio?
  • mheredgemheredge Wordsmith Here and therePosts: 24,530 mod
    Whoops! Sorry @Hermine! Yes I meant @Helvio. He drives on the wrong side of the road (but so do you).
  • HermineHermine Moderator Posts: 5,903 mod
    edited February 2014
    @Marianne - the driving instructor told me, a long time ago, I am on the right side. Shall I try the other side by one of my next trips?
  • HelvioHelvio Posts: 1,860 ✭✭✭✭✭
    Yes @mheredge , I drive on the right side. :D
  • mheredgemheredge Wordsmith Here and therePosts: 24,530 mod
    Right hand drive cars are where the driver sits on the right side of the vehicle if you're looking forwards.

    Yesterday's ride up to Gangtok was a bit scary. Sikkim's drivers have a bit of a reputation, but this driver had been driving us from early in the day, from the Indian border and didn't seem drunk! But I'm sure the driver thought he was a French racing driver. He was more often driving on the wrong side of the road than on the right and between traffic jams, drove fast,
  • kindgnicekindgnice LEO Motivator!!! Posts: 7,439 mod
    How's the culture of England now?
  • Practical_SeverardPractical_Severard Posts: 243 ✭✭✭
    Once I read a book about the British customs by a foreign correspondent who resided in London about 40 years ago. Among other peculiarities he wrote that the British had outstanding queue manners. As a general rule, no-one tried to be serviced before his turn, and even if there was a single man in a bus-stop he formed a queue of one man. He described Englishmen as absolutely patient while waiting in a shop, while a person being serviced could be leisurably chatting with a shopkeeper - a person's turn wasn't only for buying, but for chatting too.

    Also the British parent at that time never interfered if their small children played in a puddle. An English mother in a park would keep sitting with her book while her small child was playing in puddle, in totally wet and mud-stained clothes.

    Has it changed?
  • LynneLynne Your Teacher HomePosts: 8,813 mod
    edited April 2016
    We are still pretty good at queuing, and most parents don't mind a bit of mud, but some younger mums are fussier.

    I'll tell you one thing about my recent visit: I felt positively svelte.
  • kindgnicekindgnice LEO Motivator!!! Posts: 7,439 mod
    Lynne said:

    We are still pretty good at queuing, and most parents don't mind a bit of mud, but some younger mums are fussier.

    I'll tell you one thing about my recent visit: I felt positively svelte.

    Thanks for that new word @Lynne.

    According to my best friend Merriam Webster, she said:

    svelte\ˈsvelt, ˈsfelt\
    adjective
    : thin in an attractive or graceful way
    Full Definition
    1 a : slender, lithe
    b : having clean lines : sleek
    2 : urbane, suave
  • nihad99nihad99 Posts: 9
    i don t know exactily
  • kindgnicekindgnice LEO Motivator!!! Posts: 7,439 mod
    @nihad99 wrote: »
    i don t know exactily

    Hi my friend. Have you been in England before?
  • mheredgemheredge Wordsmith Here and therePosts: 24,530 mod
    @Practical_Severard the French are opposite to Brits when it comes to queuing. I met a young American guy yesterday who was stunned by how blatantly people queue jump. I had to tell him this is very normal and done with no apology or regret.

    I think nowadays most parents would fuss and worry about their kid getting dirty in a puddle. In my day it was seen as almost a healthy thing to do!
  • Practical_SeverardPractical_Severard Posts: 243 ✭✭✭
    > @mheredge said:
    > @Practical_Severard the French are opposite to Brits when it comes to queuing. I met a young American guy yesterday who was stunned by how blatantly people queue jump. I had to tell him this is very normal and done with no apology or regret.
    >
    Russians easily get offended with that; and if there are many people a local polite person would shorten his interaction with the clerk or attendant, making other people's waiting a bit shorter.

    It's great that the French go easy on that.

    > I think nowadays most parents would fuss and worry about their kid getting dirty in a puddle. In my day it was seen as almost a healthy thing to do!
    Is it about a kid's health or about doing extra laundry tonight? When I was a child that was about the latter.
  • Practical_SeverardPractical_Severard Posts: 243 ✭✭✭
    > @Lynne said:
    > We are still pretty good at queuing, and most parents don't mind a bit of mud, but some younger mums are fussier.
    >
    > I'll tell you one thing about my recent visit: I felt positively svelte.

    Well, according to that correspondent such feeling in England meant you really were.
    When I was in England though, I didn't notice anything special about the English people.
  • Practical_SeverardPractical_Severard Posts: 243 ✭✭✭
    > @Practical_Severard said:

    > When I was in England though, I didn't notice anything special about the English people.

    I mean body shape.
  • kindgnicekindgnice LEO Motivator!!! Posts: 7,439 mod
    > @Practical_Severard said:

    > When I was in England though, I didn't notice anything special about the English people.

    I mean body shape.

    Are they of the same shape?
  • kindgnicekindgnice LEO Motivator!!! Posts: 7,439 mod
    > I think nowadays most parents would fuss and worry about their kid getting dirty in a puddle. In my day it was seen as almost a healthy thing to do!
    Is it about a kid's health or about doing extra laundry tonight? When I was a child that was about the latter.

    Yes buddy, I agree. It's more advisable for kids to play outdoor games more than focusing on their lifeless gadgets. ;)
  • Practical_SeverardPractical_Severard Posts: 243 ✭✭✭
    > @kindgnice said:
    > Are they of the same shape?

    Yes, not more obese or slimmer than elsewhere in Europe.
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