The Dreamer of a Thousand Names for Starlight (cloudtrader) wrote,
The Dreamer of a Thousand Names for Starlight

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26 proverbs changed by one letter, but still true:

1 A rolling scone gathers no moss
2 Bed news travels fast
3 Actions speak louder than worms
4 Love is bling
5 Flood is thicker than water
6 A biro in the hand is worth two in the bush
7 Better Sade than sorry
8 Don't wash your dirty liner in public
9 The devil finds work for idle bands
10 Great minks think alike
11 A stitch in time saves Nina
12 If at first you don't succeed, cry again
13 A cat has nine lices
14 Death is the great reveller
15 Don't put all your eggs in one basset
16 A miss is as good as a male
17 History repents itself
18 Everything comes to he who wails
19 Honesty is the best police
20 It's no use crying over spilt milt
21 There's no place like Hove
22 Never cook a gift horse in the mouth
23 Too many Coors spoil the broth
24 A watched pet never boils
25 Where there's a will, there's a war
26 Look before you leak

Source: by RcL


In The Meaning of Liff (Pan 1983), John Lloyd and the late, lamented Douglas Adams used place names to give words to the 'many hundreds of common experiences, feelings, situations and even objects which we all know and recognize, but for which no words exist'. Here at VitQ, I decided to contrive some new Liff-style definitions. More will follow soon:

BINGHAM (n) - an especially irritating ring-tone

BOGNOR REGIS (n) - the one writer on Heat magazine who actually does watch Hollyoaks

CHATSWORTH - (n) - a noisy gaggle of office workers who, having spent all day detesting work, are now happily talking about it for hours in the pub

CLOUGH (n) - an hefty and ostentatious shock of frizzy grey hair cultivated by women of a certain age and ilk. Also known as the 'salt-and-pepper helmet'

CLUNTON (n) - someone you eventually meet after an amiable email correspondence who has forgotten to inform you that they are endlessly tiresome in real life

DREGHORN (n) - a seething right-wing article in the Daily Mail actually written to order by a left-wing twenty-something hack with dinky spectacles eating a hoisin duck wrap

DULWICH (n) - one who is smugly au fait with which wine goes with what food and which should be chilled, even though the protocol will be changed again next week

DUNFERMLINE (n) - the embossed lettering which books must, by law, have on their covers in order to be on sale in airports

FLAXBY (n) - a misunderstood phrase in an email which leads you to think an acquaintance hates you or is developing an unhealthy crush

GISSING (participial vb) - being undecided as to whether the tide is coming in or going out

KELSO (n) - the last piece of toilet roll which is glued to the cardboard tube

LUCKETT (vb) - to sound like Coldplay yet still sell like hot cakes

LUDWORTH (n) - one who perpetrates the myth that older equals wiser

MAMBLE (n) - an awkward dance, often wrongly called salsa, which is performed by a gathering of women with cloughs (qv) at arts centre evening classes

MOFFAT (n) - an understandable error, such as mixing up Cole Porter and Irving Berlin during a game of Trivial Pursuit

MOSTYN (n) - an annoying boy in glasses who remembers you

NYBSTER (n) - a small, flat ethnic hat often found perched on a clough (qv)

QUILQUOX (vb, rare) - to attempt to calculate the likely percentage of people alive who have impersonated a chicken

SCALBY (adj) - capable of being fooled repeatedly by rave reviews into buying a new REM album with only two good tracks

SNAVE (vb) - to hit 'Send & Receive' again, convinced that you are far too popular and important not to have any email

STANBOROUGH (n) - a particularly hard game of FreeCell

STARBOTTON - (n) - a meteorite which almost certainly won't hit and destroy the Earth in a few decades time, but which is a good excuse to fill a space in a newspaper

TATTERSET (n) - a display of merchandise (eg sweatshirts, key rings, own brand condiments) on sale in a trendy café-bar, which no one wants

TAUCHERS (n pl) - the two stinkers in an otherwise good book of short stories

TREEN (vb) - to find yourself legitimately but uncomfortably in a hotel above your station

TULLOES (n) - the quivering in the jaw of someone who has been listening to a chatsworth (qv) for more than an hour

TUMBY (n) - the artistic hobby of a non-artistic person

WARMWELL (n) - the particular contentment felt by two local historians who meet and fall in love

WENDLING (n) - the electricity-like unease felt in the index finger when having to use an old-fashioned phone with a dial

WIGTOFT (n) - the correct name for the terrifying teenage hairstyle nicknamed the 'Hoxton fin'

YARLET - (n) a comely young woman who dances near a swimming pool in a rap video

Source: by RcL (with a tip of the hat to Lloyd and Adams)


In the book The Meaning of Liff (Pan 1983), John Lloyd and the late, lamented Douglas Adams used place names to give words to the 'many hundreds of common experiences, feelings, situations and even objects which we all know and recognize, but for which no words exist'. Here at VitQ, with a tip of the hat to Lloyd and Adams, I decided to contrive new Liff-style definitions, so here are some more to add to those last month:

BAGBY - a frightening and unwieldy bra which more resembles an instrument of torture

BALMULLO (n) - an awkward sensation caused by knowing something unpleasant (someone being sacked, a boil being lanced) is happening right now in the next room

BOATH (vb) - to steel oneself eg for an injection or a washing machine repair man's estimate

CHETTLE (vb) - to stand there wondering why a fly flies round and round the light fitting

CRIEFF (n) - a specialised type of fine, statically-charged dust which attaches itself to a television screen

FOBBING (participial vb) - running one's thumb-nail round a roll of sticky tape, searching ever more desperately for the cut end

FOOLOW (vb) - to not know the words of a song but to mumble along to it nevertheless

FOXUP (n) - a loud and lengthy argument about hunting between two people with exactly the same views on the subject but who don't want to let that interfere with the pleasure of arguing

GREAT WITLEY (n) - a hilarious joke which somehow isn't hilarious when you try to tell it

GRIMINISH (n) - a rarefied and confusing form of the English language in which computer error messages are composed

GRITLEY (n) - a specific mixture of anxiety and territorial indignation experienced only by the elderly and brought on by having booked train seats

HIDCOTE BOYCE (n) - the modern female social faux pas of not showing one's underwear in public

JOHNBY (n) - the special wave given to one another by bus drivers

KELTY (n) - a piece of clothing which no longer fits or suits you but which you keep due to its part in a memory of a notable bedroom encounter

LEUCHARS (pl n) - the tiny, white congealed pieces which swirl in coffee when the milk has turned

LITTLE PETHERICK (n) - A small measure. One little petherick is the tiny discrepancy between wanting to join a political protest and not wanting to be seen with the sort of people who protest, which keeps you at home listening to the radio

LUCKETT (vb) - to sound like Coldplay yet still sell like hot cakes

LUXULYAN (n) - a pink, tooth-rotting chemical liquid being marketed as a 'juice drink sensation'

MALCOLM'S POINT (n, math.) - This mathematical theorem describes the relationship between the space given to an ingredient on packaging and the actual amount in the food within eg the delicious picture of chunks of gammon and the large word HAM on a 'Cheese and Ham Slice' and the tiny words 'ham (4%) on the ingredients list

MENABILLY (n rare) - a short-lived musical genre (circa 1973-4), a cross between rockabilly and Welsh male voice choir singing, the best remembered example being Valley Cat by The Teds of Tredegar

MIDDLEZOY (n dial.) - Yorkshire term for a middle child, one who can lay no claim to the winsome terms 'our eldest' and 'the babby of t' family'

PLAXTOL (adj, vb) - jaunty; to jauntily drum along with music (derived from the technical percussion term for the clappy bit in the Friends theme tune)

PLUMSTEAD (n) - the sort of pompous middle aged man who shows himself a fool by declaring that he 'doesn't suffer fools gladly'

RAGNALL (n) - the one tattered magazine used as bait by a bogus Big Issue seller

SKIPWITH (n) - a recent form of frothy repetitive jazz music invented solely for use in the dull bits of DIY and antiques programmes

SLAD (vb) - to be wilfully obese

TRISLAIG (n) - the trinity of wide-brimmed hat, salt-and-pepper beard and checked cream shirt worn at jazz gigs and weekend parties by newly-retired, middle class men

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