You may not know this but my Boofuls is a southerner, or as northern folks say, ‘poncey southerner’. He hasn’t lived in the south for many years though and has largely lost his southern accent. The odd ‘northernism’started to creep in a long time ago, although he’d never admit it, Many’s the time I’ve caught him saying things like: “I’m going for a bath.” at which point I gleefully reply ” Bath”? Did you say just say bath?”
“No. No. I said barth.” he always replies in his best received pronunciation. I half expect him to say ‘Ding Dong’ at the end of a sentence and give me a saucy wink while he twirls his handlebar moustache, he sounds so much like Terry Thomas. Thankfully he doesn’t look like him though.
Southern accents, to a born and bred northerner, are generally to be treated with suspicion, in fact anyone with a southern accent is considered to be one of four things in the north:
3. Cockney or if male, ‘a cockney bastard’
4. A villain or royalty, there are no levels in between
Boofuls isn’t any of those things, in fact he doesn’t even come from London never mind from within hearing distance of Bow Bells.
Of course for most folk ‘oop narth’ anywhere south of Birmingham is considered to be London and anyone from London is cockney.
Of course, Boofuls, as we’ve established doesn’t come from London at all, he comes from Buckinghamshire originally – which admittedly is a bit posh.
The only time Boofuls really slips back into his Buckinghamshire accent is when he’s actually in Buckingham or on the phone, which just makes Lashes and me laugh hysterically when he’s spouting such gems as, “Leave it airt.” (Yes, well posh, that I can hear you saying). It’s a totally meaningless but overused phrase but I suppose no worse than the local teenagers’ favourite words which are ‘innit’ and ‘like’ both of which are used be used in totally inappropriate contexts which would have had my old English teacher, Mr Hook, spinning like a top in his grave. I’m not sure I would even have dared to say ‘innit’ in his presence. Come to think of it, I didn’t really ever dare say anything in his presence. I can only imagine his reaction if he’s heard the following exchange between two young girls in a shop recently.
“I is totally pissed off wiv me mum and dad, innit, like”
To be honest I wasn’t sure if I should have put a question mark at the end of that sentence because when I heard it there was an upward inflection at the end that implied she was asking a question. Poor confused girl.
My curiosity as to what her mum and dad had done to piss her off so monumentally that she felt the need to broadcast it at full volume to her friend in a town centre store rather took second place to my curiosity about how a young girl girl born and raised in Lancashire managed to pick up a New York gangsta rap accent. Innit.
But anyway, back to the plot:
Munki has realised that Grandad, or Gangand, as she likes to call him, doesn’t sound like the rest of us. It turns out that Munki is turning into quite the mimic. She’s got her mockney accept off to a tee. Here’s her impersonation of Boofuls.
Don’t worry, I’m well aware that other peoples’ kids aren’t the least bit interesting so it’s only eight seconds long.
Just in case you need a translation it’s “leave it airt, leave it airt. Come and ride the hel’er skel’er.”