2 Blethering Scots


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-My favourite Scots word is...

-Dreich.

-Bumfle.

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-Guddle.

-Jiggered.

-Spoots.

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Besom.

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He we are again, celebrating the Scots language.

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That's right, the Scots don't stop.

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We've asked another bunch of well-kent faces to choose

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their favourite Scots words, tell us why and celebrate a few others besides.

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Foos yer doos.

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Crabbit.

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Maigaret.

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You're scunnered.

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-Monie a mickle maks a muckle.

-You're nothing but a bunch of chanty wraslers.

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SHRIEKS

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Well, I suppose my favourite Scots word would be "jiggered".

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How you spell it is another matter, because I'm dyslexic,

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But I think it's

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J-I-G-G-E-R-E-D.

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Jiggered. That looks like it.

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Three-time Formula One champion and all-time motor-racing legend

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Sir Jackie Stewart is one of Scotland's best-loved sports personalities.

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In my motor-racing days, I'd lose about seven,

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maybe sometimes eight pounds in weight just being dehydrated.

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Came out of a Formula One car after a race, I'd be jiggered.

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So, Jackie has been more jiggered than most people.

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In 1966, whilst giving it laldie at the Belgian Grand Prix,

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he came off the track.

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Well, I had an accident when it was heavy rain and we had aquaplaning.

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That means the water's so thick, the tyres don't go through the water,

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they go over the water.

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Therefore, the car's no longer in contact with Mother Earth.

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I went off the road and I hit a telegraph pole

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and a woodcutter's hut.

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I broke a collarbone and some ribs and I also had a back injury.

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So I was pretty jiggered.

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When you are jiggered, you can't do the things you normally do.

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You've got to sit down more than you can walk - you're scunnered.

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Now, who outside of Scotland would understand the word "scunnered"?

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But then again, it's enormously graphic, it's a really strong word.

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But it just says how badly you've been affected by something.

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You're scunnered.

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So, Jackie won his first Formula One championship in 1969,

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but success and fame wasn't always part of his life.

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Well, I grew up, of course, in Dumbarton.

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I went to the Dumbarton Academy for my schooling,

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but unfortunately, I was dyslexic and nobody understood that.

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So I was called a dunderheid -

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"You're a dunderheid!" - because I couldn't read or write correctly.

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It wasn't nice at the time.

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But I suppose that drove me in sport

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to go and want to reach a higher level.

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So, Jackie went on to win an incredible 27 Grand Prix

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and received his knighthood in 2001 for services to motor racing.

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Suddenly I was good at something. I was no longer a dunderheid.

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Good evening, Scotland.

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Please welcome your host for the next just under three minutes,

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Miss Susan Calman.

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My favourite Scots word is "besom".

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As a stand-up comedian, I love describing people using language,

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and "besom" is one of the best words

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to describe a particular type of woman.

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It's not a bad word,

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but it describes an uppity kind of woman, the kind of woman that

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makes you frustrated, the person who takes your seat on the bus,

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the person who annoys you, who talks too loudly on trains.

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It is usually paired with the phrase "wee" for people like myself.

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I'm 4ft 11, exactly the same height as Kylie Minogue.

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LOUD COUGH

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That's where the similarity ends.

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I have one talent being this short, though. It's pretty outstanding.

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I can stand up completely straight in the back of a black cab.

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COMEDY DRUM ROLL

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AWKWARD SILENCE

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It really is one of the most unbelievably fantastic words

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in the Scots language, and I'm proud to be one.

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Besom.

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On stage, Susan uses words and language to make folk laugh

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and there are certain Scots words that are particularly funny,

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especially when you're talking about the body.

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You know, your bits and bobs and that.

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Of course, "besom" is not the only descriptive word I like to use.

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I'm going to show you some of my favourites,

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and to help me out, today I'm joined by my twin sister Maigaret.

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Now, I know what you're thinking.

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You're thinking, "There's not much of a family resemblance,"

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but that's because Maigaret here is slightly more peely-wally,

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slightly more pale than I am.

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She does, however, have a wonderfully proportioned heid

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which she has there.

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She's also got a smaller pair than I do, which is good,

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because then she can listen to me, of lugs.

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We have got a very similar nose, however, a very similar neb.

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Different shaped mouth. She's more of a Cupid's bow.

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Very different shape - geggies - to each other.

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We still talk about the same amount.

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She's quiet now, she's just shy, that's why she's not saying anything.

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One thing we have in common is our oxters.

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We've got the same armpits. You may think, "How do you know that?"

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We're twins.

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We differ slightly in her queets, her ankles,

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are slightly slimmer than mine.

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She's got more sports... I've got dancers' legs.

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And finally, the family resemblance you will have noticed

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between Maigaret and myself, the behouchie, the behind.

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We have both have the same lovely behouchie.

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So, another brilliantly descriptive Scots word I love using.

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Anyway, thanks for watching, everyone.

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I've been Susan Calman. Good night!

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# Booking tactics

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# Getting out the fact sheets

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# Love them statistics

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# Blink...and you'll miss it. #

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As a broadcaster and football pundit,

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Stuart Cosgrove has a very wide-ranging Scots vocabulary.

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One of my favourite Scots words of all time

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is actually the word "baw"...

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which can be used in a number of different ways.

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Especially, for example, with the word "bag" - so you have the word

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-"bawbag".

-I beg your pardon?!

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Now, "baw" is simply the Scots word for a ball.

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A "bag" is simply the bag into which a ball might go.

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That could be a snooker table,

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it could be football, when the ball goes into the net,

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but, of course, in Scots language,

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and particularly through football, it's been reclaimed

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as a Scottish word that kind of means an idiot or a fool,

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or someone of disrepute, or someone you can't stand -

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they're a bawbag.

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ALARM

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Now, there are some people, I must admit this, folks,

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there are some people out there with filthy minds

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that think it might mean something else, but it doesn't.

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It means a fool or an idiot.

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A great Scottish word - bawbag.

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Working on the radio show Off The Ball, I think, in lots of ways

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allows the Scots language to be spoken publicly.

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And of course, Scottish football itself is actually populated

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over the years with Scots language.

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So a really, really poor centre-half is a tumshie. A turnip.

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Of course, many Scottish teams take their nicknames from Scots language.

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An obvious one would be Arbroath, the Red Lichties from the red light off the coast of Arbroath.

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By far and away my favourites is Wick Academy in the north-east of Scotland.

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And Wick Academy's nickname is the Scorries.

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And Scorries, as I understand it, in the north-east of Scotland,

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is the word that they would use linguistically for a seagull.

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Scorries. It's just a great word.

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It almost has that sense of gutturalness about it

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that all great Scots words should have.

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My granny used to have this phrase, "Monie a mickle maks a muckle."

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Now, that's a real classic, that one. It's about saving up, isn't it?

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"Monie a mickle maks a muckle, son." If you keep wee bits of money and you keep them all together,

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it'll grow into big money and you'll become rich.

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In the 1950s when Stuart was at school,

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talking Scots wisnae the done thing.

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As a kid growing up, I was aware that

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I actually spoke two languages, one in the playground and one in the classroom.

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Scots language had actually been something

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that had almost been criminalised within the culture.

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It was something that you could speak to your friends about or in,

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or maybe an older relative, like a granny or whatever,

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and you could do it in the playground,

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but as soon as you went into the classroom,

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it was almost beaten out of you

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and you had to speak RP proper English, as it were.

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Thankfully, these days attitudes towards speaking Scots are very different.

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The time is ripe in Scottish society now for us to reclaim,

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rediscover and fall back in love again with our own language.

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Now, it's really important,

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I think, in a modern global society that you understand English,

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because it's one of the great global languages, but if you're a Scot

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and you feel Scottish and you want to speak in the Scots language,

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it's an amazingly proud language with centuries of history.

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Rediscover it from the playground, don't whisper it.

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Be proud of the words, say the words because they're our words

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and you've every right to speak your language.

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Our favourite Scots words are...

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Neep.

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Coo.

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Gie.

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Michty.

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Foos yer doos!

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Tattie.

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Fit like.

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Our favourite Scottish words!

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For these Aberdonian schoolchildren, speaking,

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writing and reading in Scots is very important.

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They've even got a magic bus to help them.

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I'm a muckle fearsome pirate wi' a beard like a hairy dug

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A bunnet wi' twa fight-crossed banes and a gold ring in my lug

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But my pirate days are numbered as the joiner can confirm

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He's diagnosed my wooden leg has terminal woodworm.

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Down the road in Dundee, poet Mark Thomson lives and breathes Scots.

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He's particularly passionate about his native dialect.

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It's the tartans, it's the pipes, it's using words like glaikit

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Halkit, barkit, crabbit, clype

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Potted hough, haggis, stovies, cybies, tripe.

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It's the hills, it's the heathers, it's the lochs, it's the glens

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It's aboot the Highland games

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Tossin' the caber, throwin' the hammer

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And being 500 miles awa fae the Thames

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Hairy coos and hardy bits

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Highland dancin', bonny views

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Eagles, ospreys, red grouse, capercaillies

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Ceilidhs, clansmen, kilts and claymores

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Blended single malts, whiskies galore

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It's the highlands, the islands, stags, nooks, crannies and crags

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It's a' that and mair

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It's just bein' Scots withoot the red hair

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But it's much bigger than that...

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It's just bein' Scottish and it's as simple as that.

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When I write, I've got a choice of Scottish words, English words

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and Dundonian words, as well.

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So when I'm looking for a word, I'm no stuck.

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I can play aboot with the three of them, like.

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And for me when I'm writing stuff it's aboot...it's aboot usin' sounds.

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No necessarily words, it's the sound for me

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that creates the meaning

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and the flow and the rhythm of what I'm actually kinda writing about.

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It's just like when Burns was livin' 250 years ago,

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Burns used his ain dialect and it's great to hear.

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Back in the 1780s, many literate,

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educated people were moving away from Scots,

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but Rabbie Burns published his first collection of poems

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chiefly in the mither tongue.

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For me, Burns is very important.

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He's very important to the Scottish language to have kept it alive.

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If Burns hadnae of been writing in his ain dialect as well

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we wouldnae be talking aboot him the day.

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Up In The Morning Early by Robert Burns.

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Cauld blaws the wind frae east to west

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The drift is driving sairly

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Sae loud and shrill's I hear the blast - I'm sure it's winter fairly!

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Up in the morning's no for me, Up in the morning early

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When a' the hills are cover'd wi' snaw

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I'm sure it's winter fairly.

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It's about where you're fae.

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And your accent and your dialect is where you're fae,

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so dinnae change it.

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Keep it the way it is.

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It's important, and let's keep it alive.

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My favourite word in Scots is "bumfle".

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John Lowrie Morrison, aka Jolomo,

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is one of Scotland's best-loved artists.

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Bumfle means to fold or crease

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or tousle up a piece of paper

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or a sheet, or clothing, or you might even say

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you bumfle somebody's hair.

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But it's a kind of soft messiness.

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And, of course, if you do that,

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I'm bumfling up the word.

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Bumfle is a really nice expressive word,

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and I just use it all the time, and all the family use it.

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The time of day I love painting most is the gloaming.

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It's just wonderful, because

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it takes away a lot of the detail you can get caught up in,

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and as an expressive painter, I'm not really interested in too much detail.

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I prefer just expressing the colour

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and the textures in a very expressionistic way.

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The braw and bonny west coast of Scotland

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has always been his inspiration.

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This is where, for forty years, I've had

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my inspiration for most of what I paint,

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and in Scots parlance,

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this is a glourin', lourin' day.

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At its best, or worst, whatever way you want to do it.

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There's everything here that a painter would want.

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In contrast to his present surroundings,

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John's family hail fae Glasgow. As a wee lad,

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he remembers visiting his aunt in Maryhill.

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I can remember the first time hearing my aunt Ruby saying,

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"Oh, the cludgie's out the back."

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And I went, "Cludgie? What's a cludgie?" And, of course,

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a cludgie's a toilet.

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TOILET FLUSHES

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The close she stayed in was on the ground floor.

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There was a gas lamp at the beginning of the close, but at the back,

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where the cludgie was, there was no light at all,

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and you had to feel your way and make sure

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you got the right spot to perform in.

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But cludgie is just a wonderful word,

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and to add "clarty" to that is even better.

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Clarty cludgie!

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My favourite Scots word is a wonderful word.

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It's "dreich".

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It's got all those brilliant sounds in it.

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This is how it's spelt -

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d-r-e-i-c-h.

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Well, that's how I spell it! I hope that is the way it's spelt.

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Sadly, in Scotland, we get a lot of dreich days,

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and dreich just describes how low the sky is,

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invokes a sort of misery.

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The rain is a bit smirry,

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another great Scots word,

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which means a sort of light rain

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that cuts into your very soul, actually.

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And so, dark, overcast.

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It feels like the light doesn't get through most of the day,

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and it's just dreich.

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It's a day you want to stay in front of the fire, really.

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Comic actress Elaine C Smith performs all over Scotland,

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and knows only too well the variety

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of different dialects that the Scots language encompasses.

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Within Scotland, in such a relatively small place,

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the differences between the regions and the areas

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from the borders to Aberdeen...

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you know, I do panto in Aberdeen,

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at the end I've learnt a whole new language!

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The first time I went to Aberdeen, about 25 years ago, or something,

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I thought they were speaking German, you know, that sort of Doric,

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very down there sort of thing.

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And I'd heard like, you know, "Foos yer doos,"

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which I was, "I beg your pardon?"

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SHE LAUGHS

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And foos yer doos I love, you know, and Glaswegians don't get it,

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you know, I've got to explain to friends and family, you know,

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that "foos yer doos?" means "how are your pigeons?"

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And there's just something very funny about that as a greeting,

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"Foos yer doos?", and the response has to be "Chavin awa,"

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which means "pecking away", which means they're eating.

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So life is good!

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In another life I was a high school teacher, and I taught in Edinburgh,

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in a high school there, and I had to learn totally new words there.

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Words like "barry".

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"Barry" meant, "Oh, that's barry, miss" - that's great.

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I had no... I thought they were talking about some guy that everybody knew,

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but "barry" was another word for great or good.

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I love, in Glaswegian, those words like, you know, "that's bowfin."

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Bowfin is just, you can smell it, which is brilliant.

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"Thae socks are bowfin" is just fantastic.

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There are loads of words I love in Scots.

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And actually, at times, I'm not really that aware

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that they are Scots words, they just come into your,

0:18:370:18:40

you know, everyday usage, which is wonderful, cos it's alive.

0:18:400:18:45

My favourite Scots word is "guddle".

0:18:540:18:56

DRAMATIC MUSIC

0:18:560:19:00

Rhona Martin is an Olympic champion.

0:19:050:19:07

Hence the dramatic music.

0:19:070:19:09

Guddle. It means "messy", and when I was growing up,

0:19:090:19:13

my mum used the word a lot

0:19:130:19:15

when I was trying to cook or bake in the kitchen.

0:19:150:19:17

All I heard was, "This place is a guddle."

0:19:170:19:20

And guddle is a word that's actually used a lot in curling.

0:19:220:19:25

So this is a typical guddle.

0:19:270:19:29

In this situation, red would put up guard in the centre

0:19:290:19:33

so that they could get in behind the cover,

0:19:330:19:35

and yellow can't get to them.

0:19:350:19:37

So red want to steal only one shot.

0:19:370:19:39

They don't mind if they lose an eight.

0:19:390:19:41

Well, that clears that up. Thank you, Rhona.

0:19:410:19:44

Why is it called a guddle? Cos it's messy.

0:19:440:19:48

These days, Rhona is a curling coach,

0:19:480:19:50

but back in 2002,

0:19:500:19:52

she embarked on a roller-coaster ride to Olympic glory.

0:19:520:19:55

We knew we could reach the semifinals,

0:19:550:19:58

we'd beaten all the teams before, so we knew we played well. We had a good chance of a medal.

0:19:580:20:03

We'd two games left, and we only had to win one of them to reach the semifinal.

0:20:030:20:06

Quite easy, really.

0:20:060:20:10

But no, not for us. We lost them both.

0:20:100:20:12

There are two Scots words that would sum up how I was feeling that night -

0:20:120:20:16

"crabbit" and "scunnered".

0:20:160:20:18

We had just blown our chance of an Olympic medal.

0:20:180:20:21

But we did have a lifeline -

0:20:210:20:23

if Switzerland were to win their last game, we were in a play-off.

0:20:230:20:29

And, as luck would have it, Switzerland did win.

0:20:290:20:32

Come on, the Swiss!

0:20:320:20:34

We weren't going to blow it this time.

0:20:350:20:37

So with some Scottish true grit and determination,

0:20:370:20:40

we came through the two play-offs, came through the semifinal,

0:20:400:20:44

and won the final, and we were Olympic champions.

0:20:440:20:47

My favourite word in day-to-day working life,

0:20:580:21:02

working in the kitchen, is a word called "spoots".

0:21:020:21:06

Spoots being razor clams, you will have all seen these on the beach,

0:21:080:21:12

but here at the front of the spoot, they've got a little funnel,

0:21:120:21:16

and when it's in the sand, the little head comes up,

0:21:160:21:20

and it spoots the water out, hence the Scottish word for spoots.

0:21:200:21:25

The aptly named top Scots chef Tom Kitchin was just 29 years old

0:21:250:21:29

when he won a coveted Michelin star.

0:21:290:21:31

Mr Kitchin's kitchen is full of both Scots ingredients

0:21:320:21:35

and some very tasty Scots language.

0:21:350:21:38

When I write my menus, I'll add little Scots words in there.

0:21:410:21:44

We've got haggis, neeps and tatties, of course,

0:21:440:21:46

we've got cullen skink, we've got cranachan, clootie dumpling, cock-a-leekie soup...

0:21:460:21:51

I think the Scots words really do express what the word is,

0:21:510:21:54

the attributes to the actual product,

0:21:540:21:58

and it's a real talking point when you read the menu.

0:21:580:22:01

I speak French in the service, I speak Scottish in the service,

0:22:030:22:06

so if I say to the young boy who's on his first day,

0:22:060:22:09

"Quickly, I need the neeps," or "I need the spoots,"

0:22:090:22:11

he has to quickly learn that, you know, because that's what it's all about for me.

0:22:110:22:15

It's like when I went to work in France, I didn't speak a word of French,

0:22:150:22:19

and they didn't change anything for me, you know?

0:22:190:22:21

It's all part of the culture of learning, really, isn't it?

0:22:210:22:24

I think there's a massive heritage of food in Scotland that people forget or don't even know exists.

0:22:240:22:30

I think now there's a real revolution of, you know,

0:22:300:22:32

people celebrating what's Scottish, and we should be really proud of it,

0:22:320:22:36

and I certainly am.

0:22:360:22:38

Probably my favourite Scots word or expression is "chanty wrasler".

0:22:390:22:44

A chanty is a chamber pot,

0:22:440:22:49

and a wrasler is literally a wrestler,

0:22:490:22:55

or someone who grapples or shakes something.

0:22:550:23:00

So as a term of abuse, you're basically saying,

0:23:000:23:04

"You would shake a chamber pot."

0:23:040:23:07

The star of stage and screen Denis Lawson grew up in rural Perthshire.

0:23:080:23:13

Back then, even the children had to work for their supper.

0:23:130:23:16

Tatties don't pick themselves, you know!

0:23:160:23:18

'Come on! Time to get up. We've work to do!'

0:23:180:23:22

Another phrase that's very tied up with my childhood is "tattie howking".

0:23:220:23:29

And you went tattie howking in the tattie holidays.

0:23:290:23:32

"Howking" is, as far as I know, lifting, pulling up,

0:23:320:23:37

and "tatties", obviously, potatoes, spuds.

0:23:370:23:41

Erm...tattie-howking was very hard work.

0:23:410:23:45

The tractor went up the furrow and you're picking as fast as you can.

0:23:450:23:49

It's backbreaking and unrelenting

0:23:490:23:51

and you've got half an eye on the tractor

0:23:510:23:54

and it's at the end of the furrow

0:23:540:23:55

and it's starting to go back round the field

0:23:550:23:58

and you have to finish your bit and be at the next furrow before the tractor gets to you.

0:23:580:24:02

Here's a Scots word I'm fond of

0:24:090:24:11

that's still very much in circulation.

0:24:110:24:13

It's an old Scots word with Germanic roots.

0:24:140:24:17

"Boak" as in "dry boak" as in "the heaves",

0:24:170:24:20

as in, "That's giving me the dry boak."

0:24:200:24:22

HE RETCHES

0:24:220:24:23

Huh?

0:24:230:24:25

Here are three things that give me the dry boak.

0:24:250:24:28

A hair in my porridge.

0:24:310:24:33

HE RETCHES

0:24:340:24:36

A fried egg in my porridge.

0:24:380:24:41

HE RETCHES

0:24:410:24:43

Actually just porridge.

0:24:450:24:48

HE RETCHES

0:24:480:24:49

TOILET FLUSHES

0:24:490:24:51

I like "boak" because it's expressive. It's onomatopoeic.

0:24:560:24:59

It sounds like what it is. Go on. Try vomiting without going "boak".

0:24:590:25:04

See?

0:25:060:25:07

I like "giving me the dry boak" - there's a wonderful rhythm about it.

0:25:080:25:12

"You're giving me the dry boak, you're giving me the dry boak, you're giving me the dry boak."

0:25:120:25:16

In fact, many of my favourite Scots expressions have this wonderful rhythm about them.

0:25:160:25:20

For example, "I could eat the scabby heid aff a wean,"

0:25:200:25:23

which means you're so hungry that you could eat the scarred head off a child.

0:25:230:25:28

"I could eat the scabby heid aff a wean" - it's practically hip-hop.

0:25:280:25:31

HE BEATBOXES

0:25:360:25:38

I could eat the scabby heid aff a wean

0:25:410:25:44

Eat the scabby heid aff a wean

0:25:440:25:46

Sca-sca-scabby

0:25:460:25:47

Heid aff a wean

0:25:470:25:48

Eat the scabby heid aff a wean.

0:25:480:25:50

It's not just the rhythm, though.

0:25:550:25:57

It's the succinctly presented, yet highly loaded visual images.

0:25:570:26:00

Here's a belter - "away and bile yer heid",

0:26:000:26:03

which means "go forth and boil your head".

0:26:030:26:06

That's pretty hardcore, isn't it?

0:26:060:26:08

They're not asking you simmer a finger or lightly saute your chin.

0:26:080:26:12

They're asking you to actually boil your entire dome.

0:26:120:26:15

And to do it yourself, to lower your own head into a large pan of salted, boiling water.

0:26:150:26:21

That is a pretty compelling image, is it not?

0:26:210:26:24

I'm sorry, I can't... I can't do it.

0:26:280:26:30

Can't do it.

0:26:310:26:33

And what about, "I could eat the scabby heid aff a wean"?

0:26:330:26:36

Imagine - you're so ravenous that you're poised there,

0:26:360:26:39

hovering with your fork and knife over a child's head.

0:26:390:26:42

And not just a child's head, but one that's flecked with crusty scar tissue.

0:26:420:26:47

Well, no need to imagine. Here's a wean.

0:26:470:26:50

Here's "the heid aff a wean".

0:26:540:26:56

Here are all the scabs.

0:26:570:26:59

I've not eaten for three days so I'm about to eat the scabby heid

0:26:590:27:04

aff a wean. Here we go.

0:27:040:27:07

I think I'll start with a cheek.

0:27:080:27:10

That was rare. Oh, scab.

0:27:120:27:14

Now, one of my very, very favourite Scots expressions is,

0:27:140:27:17

"Your coat's on a shoogly peg."

0:27:170:27:19

"Shoogly" - one of those great Scots words that sounds like what it means.

0:27:190:27:23

Shoogly, shaky. Precarious. Shoogly.

0:27:230:27:27

And if your coat's on a shoogly peg, well, you're on thin ice, pal.

0:27:270:27:31

Things are very, very finely balanced.

0:27:310:27:34

It could all come crashing down at any minute,

0:27:340:27:36

like a live action game of Buckeroo.

0:27:360:27:38

You got chocolate all over that lovely expensive jumper.

0:27:430:27:46

It was your sister's jumper, but...

0:27:500:27:52

It was your sister's chocolate.

0:27:560:27:58

I'm afraid I'm going to have to ask you to leave now.

0:28:060:28:08

It would seem that consumption of a child's head was inappropriate,

0:28:080:28:11

even in the interests of illustrating the lovely Scots language.

0:28:110:28:15

Anyway, cheery-bye the noo and lang may your lum reek.

0:28:150:28:19

Oh. Lang may your lum reek.

0:28:190:28:21

Lang may your lum reek.

0:28:210:28:24

Lang may your lum reek.

0:28:240:28:26

I said lang may your lum reek! Awreet?

0:28:260:28:29

Awreet? Awreet? Awreet? Awreet?

0:28:290:28:31

Subtitles by Red Bee Media Ltd

0:28:520:28:54

Ten more well-known Scottish personalities share their favourite Scots words. Comedian Susan Calman is a wee 'besom', Elaine C Smith has seen a lot of 'dreich' weather, Sir Jackie Stewart's Formula One adventures left him feeling a bit 'jiggered' at times and Denis Lawson shares his memories of 'tattie howkin'. Sanjeev Kohli introduces and narrates while getting the 'boak' at the prospect of a hair in his porridge.


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