Monday 8 December 2008

Gompletely different

It would appear that some help is needed in distinguishing bofs from gom. It's all about the marvellous fluidity of the English language. Consider, for instance, the word gusto: not a word that you might associate with taste, yet that's its origin, in the Italian. (The coming of the Italian opera to London, with all its connection to fashion, fops and fandango - worth a detour.)

Boring old fart was originally an expression applied by callow youth to those older citizens who chose to burn their rubber in parts of the track other than the currently accepted racing line; however much youth tried to persuade them that they were on the wrong course, they would motor serenely on, impervious to the increasingly hysterical rants of the youngsters who would finally give up with this pathetic attempt at an insult. The knowing bof would smile contentedly and adopt the insult as a badge of honour.

Gom cannot RISE ABOVE in this fashion, being capable only of stooping and muttering, creasing their already-wrinkled brows with further needless rage. Poor things: they should stick their fevered heads in the ice box for a few minutes - yes, gom, chill.

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