British politeness?

To summarize, Brutish (im)politeness is not an easy phenomenon to define. It is inherently an endogenous fact, an indisputable state of heart, covered by the exogenous mask of a comprehensive formality repertoire which provides catch-words for every occasion—sadly enough, since a repertoire of corresponding emotional states which might generate polite behaviour are conspicuous by their absence. And this is proof of a higher impoliteness.
From: Spiros DoikasNo Sex Please, We’re Brutish! (p. 75)

british-politeness

The How to be British Collection by Martyn Alexander Ford

This table has been posted in a number of blogs…

WHAT THE BRITISH SAY WHAT THE BRITISH MEAN WHAT FOREIGNERS UNDERSTAND
I hear what you sayI disagree and do not want to discuss it furtherHe accepts my point of view
With the greatest respectYou are an idiotHe is listening to me
That’s not badThat’s goodThat’s poor
That is a very brave proposalYou are insaneHe thinks I have courage
Quite goodA bit disappointingQuite good
I would suggestDo it or be prepared to justify yourselfThink about the idea, but do what you like
Oh, incidentally/ by the wayThe primary purpose of our discussion isThat is not very important
I was a bit disappointed thatI am annoyed thatIt doesn’t really matter
Very interestingThat is clearly nonsenseThey are impressed
I’ll bear it in mindI’ve forgotten it alreadyThey will probably do it
I’m sure it’s my faultIt’s your faultWhy do they think it was their fault?
You must come for dinnerIt’s not an invitation, I’m just being politeI will get an invitation soon
I almost agreeI don’t agree at allHe’s not far from agreement
I only have a few minor commentsPlease rewrite completelyHe has found a few typos
Could we consider some other optionsI don’t like your ideaThey have not yet decided
3 Responses to “British politeness?”
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