People in Britain have been revealing certain parts of their everyday language that is almost a secret code that means something completely different if you don’t understand the context.
For example, there is a whole style used in French called ‘Verlan’ that comes from swapping the syllables of a word around to create new words.
What chance does someone who studied GCSE French have against that?
However, while the average part-time French speaker might struggle with that, native English speakers are no different.
Over on Reddit, people have been sharing a load of ‘code words’ that are said by people in the UK that seem to mean one thing, but often mean the complete opposite.
You know the sort of thing – we’re talking about calling someone ‘mate’ when you’re angry and a ‘c***’ when they’re your friend.
That’s not specific to the UK, but it’s a good example.
But, let’s allow the people of Reddit’s ‘Ask A Brit’ sub tell us what they reckon.
One common example was ‘I’ll let you go’, which one user explains actually means ‘I want to leave now’.
See also: ‘I won’t keep you’, ‘I’ll let you get on’, and ‘Better let you go’.
According to one user, that actually means: "I have nothing more to say to you and no longer wish to interact, now f*** off."
Another comment got a bit more specific: "Here in Wales it's ‘now in a minute’, meaning an indeterminate period of time somewhat longer than a minute.”
Other suggestions included ‘interesting idea’ actually meaning ‘what a load of s***’, and ‘I’ll think about it,’ which actually just means ‘no’.
Here’s a couple more classics from the thread...
One said: “I beg your pardon = The f*** did you just say to me, you little s***?”
“'I'll look into that' translates to 'I'm not wasting my time on that s***'”, said another.
“That’s fine [means] – that is really awful,” another commented.
“As a reply to a yes/no question: “’Yeah, no’ = no, ‘No, yeah’ = yes,” read one comment.
Told you it was confusing, didn’t we?
Still, as one person points out in the comments, there’s no greater and more all-encompassing sentence than: “Right, I’ll just put the kettle on.”
If you’re ever stuck, just go with that.