Elizabeth drove up to the house about midnight last night. With her were the two youngest boys – Henry, back from a summer job in Ireland, and Edward back from summer camp in Scotland. We were watching a movie when she drove up – one that was almost suicidally depressing. This is England, it was called, about a paki-bashing group of skinheads from Liverpool during the ’80s.
“I can’t understand what they are saying,” said Sophie.
“You’re lucky,” Maria replied. “But neither can we, actually. This film needs subtitles. They’re speaking of dialect of English that must be unintelligible – even to most English people.”
The only word we all understood began with an ‘f’ and was almost always used in the present participle-functioning-as-an-adjective-or-adverb form of the verb. Since that word was at least half the dialog, we didn’t miss much.
for Markets and Money