Reason #4297 why I love this country

This morning, a breakfast TV announcer on a nationally broadcast programme forgot herself for a moment and said “oh bugger, I missed [XYZ trivial feelgood thing]”.

The TV network will probably get a small flurry of letters from people who posture themselves rather like this:


but she won’t get fired for saying a swear.

Categories: Culture, Sociology


5 replies

  1. Whereas I love your country because in it “bugger” is a swear word.

  2. .. of course, if [XYZ trivial feelgood thing] is owned by the network in question, the presenter is far more likely to be caned by the startion owners, as well as any XYZ fans.

    I loves our TV networks, really I does.. *sigh*

  3. That’s me exactly, when the butler informs me that the G & T has run out.

  4. Helen, I can envision your dismayed outrage in excruciating detail. I hope the butler keeps a good stock of smelling salts.
    re: bugger – My father was telling a family anecdote today, about one of his cousins aged 3, who was trained by his elder brothers to sabotage a ladies’ morning tea hosted by his mother, via standing angelically in the centre of the parlour and declaiming “poop bugger shit damn!”.
    Dad then said “those were the worst words they knew, y’know, nothing sexual” and it struck me – in BritEnglish and Strine, “bugger” as a swearword doesn’t have sexual connotations, which is strange when you consider its close relation to “buggery”. But there are distinctions – he’s a bugger is not the same as he’s a buggerer, and buggering is not the same as buggerising about.
    Perhaps someone more expert in language mechanics might remind me of the etymological term here for this sort of new word formation to make a distinction between the original word and the derived new word, especially in slang – is it a backformation or something different?

  5. And then there’s “I’m buggered”, something you might not want to admit to in some circles in case they didn’t realise you were so tired you had “bugger all” chance of finding a better way of explaining yourself. But this is really just “playing silly buggers”, so perhaps I should just “bugger off” to bed.

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