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Thread: UK slang

  1. #1
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    UK slang

    Can anyone help me to learn UK slang (street language) like in movies Lock,stock and two smoking barrels or The Snatch. ?

  2. #2
    Hanna
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    Quote Originally Posted by americano View Post
    Can anyone help me to learn UK slang (street language) like in movies Lock,stock and two smoking barrels or The Snatch. ?
    If you change your nick, lol!
    Be aware though, the UK is very region and class oriented when it comes to accents, slang and speech in general.
    I'd be very cautious to start using slang which would single me out as either working class or upper class - likewise any particular region unless you actually live there... This takes out at least 50% of all slang you could use.
    So be careful with that, you will just sound silly if you get it wrong. (I know from my own experience....)

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    it's very hard to use slang properly, almost impossible unless you move to the UK (in case of UK slang), i mean using slang is kind of Master Level))

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    Thanks for adviсes. May you help me to learn that by skype?
    Skype goblin_mega

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    The language used in those films is an exaggerated blend of cockney and criminal slang created purely for comic purposes. Even if you could learn how to talk that there are literally no contexts in which you could make use of it without sounding like an idiot, with the possible exception of a stand-up routine or another Guy Ritchie film.

  6. #6
    Hanna
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    Again, it seems to me that it is more important for you to study grammar and vocabulary. But if you are sure.... For East End London slang, Download from the Internet:

    "Only Fools and Horses" It's a series with probably at least a hundred episodes. Working class slang throughout. Warning, it will be hard to understand.


    "Porridge" Classic 1970s-80s series about a man who is in prison. Quite funny, lots and lots of episodes.


    "EastEnders": Soap opera about working class people in East London. There are three or four episodes every week.This series has been running since the 1980s...

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    On this is what I need. thanks

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    It would be nice to practice it more with someone on skype

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  10. #10
    Hanna
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    Although I speak British English, I do not use a lot of slang, for the reason that 1) I am not a native British person and, like I said, most slang is either regional or class related. I don't fit firmly into any British category. Secondly I am a woman and and as such I use less slang, and particularly not the type of expressions that you are after (Like in "Lock, stock....")
    I am not aware of anyone who is a regular user of the forum who speaks cockney. In England, people who speak with these type of accents usually know no language other than English, so you would not find them on a language forum. One more thing; people who speak with these types of accents ALSO speak grammatically incorrect.
    Basically, when you learn a foreign language, you should leave the accents, slang and swearing for LAST when you are like a native speaker.

  11. #11
    zxc
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    Quote Originally Posted by Hanna View Post
    Basically, when you learn a foreign language, you should leave the accents, slang and swearing for LAST when you are like a native speaker.
    Hanna is right.

    I wouldn't recommend slang or cussing in a target language unless you lived in a country where the target language is the primary language, and only after you have a firm grasp on it. There may be some exceptions, I've met some people who were amazing with picking up English but have never been to an English-speaking country.

    But from personal observations, when I went to Kiev, I talked with quite few people around my age (early to mid 20s) who spoke alright English, and they could use slang well enough in some circumstances. But there are so many nuances to slang and cursing, that inevitably they would say something that a native American speaker would find to be either very strange or possibly offensive.

    Although, I guess there's not much of a problem with learning the slang and all of that if you're not intending on using it, but rather recognizing it. I've read and learned a bit of матерный язык, I know the words and how they're used, but I've never spoken them, and I don't intend to. When I visited Russia on a different occasion with a class of mine, one of my friends thought he was cool because he'd read an article over русский мат and could cuss in Russian. The only thing cool afterwards was the bag of ice over his face after he tried using some of the words around Russians he didn't know.

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    Завсегдатай sperk's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zedeeyen View Post
    [video=youtube;u4VFqbroi1I]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u4VFqbroi1I
    what does the young guy say when he first comes in with the beer? Sounds like "get your laughing gear around that."
    Кому - нары, кому - Канары.

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    Very informative, thanks. Your thinking has gone the wrong way. I wanna learn slanguage not for using it every day, it's just for learning english, it's my way to learning.
    Turnover of language I want to know how flexible it can be. From complex to simple.

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    Завсегдатай Throbert McGee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sperk View Post
    what does the young guy say when he first comes in with the beer? Sounds like "get your laughing gear around that."
    Possibly, or maybe "get your laughing gear in on that". It's definitely "laughing gear" -- meaning "equipment used for laughing," meaning "mouth."

    I've never heard "laughing gear" before, but in US slang, the mouth is sometimes called a "cake hole" or a "pie hole" -- often in phrases like "shut your cake hole". (But under no circumstances should "cake hole" or "pie hole" be confused with "corn hole"!!!)

    Anyway, that commercial was pretty hilarious.
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    Завсегдатай Throbert McGee's Avatar
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    Americano, after six months of learning authentic UK slang on YouTube:



    Is this the boss happening pad? I for sure am digging the large American breasts of foxes!

  16. #16
    zxc
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    Quote Originally Posted by sperk View Post
    what does the young guy say when he first comes in with the beer? Sounds like "get your laughing gear around that."
    You heard right. Laughing gear is slang for mouth.

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    Завсегдатай sperk's Avatar
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    [QUOTE=Throbert McGee;221097]
    [video=youtube;w_zPmwvQFaM]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w_zPmwv /QUOTE]
    ...two wild and crazy guys
    Кому - нары, кому - Канары.

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    Quote Originally Posted by americano View Post
    Thanks for the adviсes. May Would you help me to learn that by skype?
    Skype goblin_mega
    Quote Originally Posted by americano View Post
    My name is Aleksey and I'm from Ukraine. I'm looking for a penpal from the UK or USA. I can help you to practice your Russian.
    My skype is goblin_mega. Call me.

    Aleksey, I know it might seem as if we are all against you here... It is not that we're against you learning slang, it is that not everyone on this forum will be able to help you with that. As you can tell from this thread so far, none of us are big users of UK slang and as Hanna has explained it can be very local specific.

    On this forum we try to correct one another's mistakes in both English and Russian (and German and Spanish...) as I have done above with two of your postings and we won't be able to help you as much if you are writing in UK slang. Additionally, as you are still having troubles with May vs. Would and writing sentences in English without slang... maybe you should focus on learning "proper" English first and wait just a little bit longer before you dive into the world of slang???
    I only speak two languages, English and bad English.
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    hm. I think you are right. Maybe I'm wrong. Can someone help me to improve my skills with "proper" UK English in voice by skype and a bit of slang ?

  20. #20
    Завсегдатай Throbert McGee's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by sperk View Post
    ...two wild and crazy guys
    Сначала я хотел указать его на ролик Are You Being Served?, и сказать ему: Видите ли этого парня "Mr. Humphries"? Он грандмастер современного британского слэнга -- вам следует обращать внимание к нему, и тщалетьно имитировать его ВО ВСЕМ.



    Но это казолось как-то "садистски", и я передумал...

    But seriously, americano, the best type of "English slang" for you to learn use right now are words like "cool" (meaning, slang words which have been around since the 1950s, and which are equally understood by grandmothers and grandsons in New York, London, and Sydney).

    If you try to be more specific and learn use 21st-century UK slang, you'll end up sounding like a Sasha Baron Cohen character.

    P.S. In the above video-clip, "Mrs. Slocombe" (the purple-haired старуха) uses the phrase "cake-hole" to mean "mouth": "A special switch for Mr. Lucas, to shut his atomic cake-hole."

    Edited to emphasize: It's certainly a good idea to learn foreign slang for "passive purposes" -- so that you can understand it if you hear or read it. But until you're much closer to "native ability" in a foreign language, you should not ACTIVELY USE slang in speaking or writing.
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