Whit if, instead o’ “Freedom”, Wallace hud cried: “It is what it is.”?
Those o’ ye who are, again like mahsel, o’ a ‘‘certain age’’ (ie: decrepit) may recall yins like “not fit for purpose” and “too much information.”
Ah’ll bet ye this irritant goes WAY back and mah faither got fed up tae the back teeth in the Fifties wae folk saying “See you later alligator!” tae him.
Thirty or so years back the Yankee-ism “situation” crept uninvited intae oor volcabulary like a loud jaikie at yir granny’s funeral purvey.
Its origins can be traced back tae an infamous Vietnam War press conference when a hack asked a US Army general if mony o’ his sodjirs had perished in their latest battle and he replied: “I can confirm there was a negative personnel situation.”
Weel, even Lanarkshire cooncillors picked it up, wan memorably describing the emergency demolition o’ the public lavvies in Blantyre oan safety groonds withoot prior cooncil committee permission as a “sanitation homologation situation.”
This wis when ah was reporting oan the auld Hamilton Cooncil and shortly efterwards moved tae cover Clydesdale District Cooncil which wis a trendy-free zone, wae the likes o’ Colonel Monteith o’ Carstairs and Cooncillor Nancy Allison o’ Carnwath being gloriously Politically Incorrect at meetings.
Ah oft hud tae pit mah pen doon as whit they were saying wis far too libellous or hilarious fur me tae continue taking shorthaund through mah tears o’ laughter.
The current phrase-o’-the-moment daein’ the roonds is the wan that’s bugged me the maist – “it is what it is” and it’s illigitimate wean “we are where we are”.
Neever huv ah heard a phrase that summed up the terminal peely-wallyness o’ current times.
Ah mean, whit if William Wallace hud been sittin’ haein’ a quiet hauf in Maisie’s Bar when his pal dashed in and cried: “Wullie. The English troops hus taken liberties wae your Marion and burnt yir hoose in the Castlegate doon!” and The Braveheart hud just replied “Ach weel. It is whit it is.”?
Whit if Churchill – the Prime Meenister, no’the insurance dug – hud been oan his fifth brandy o’ the morning in 10 Downing Street and been telt the Germans were aboot tae invade and hud jist slurred: “It ish what it ish.” ? (I wis tempted tae say ye’d be reading this in German but yon braw Teutonic comedian Henning Wehn – the wan who looks like Sid frae the Ice Age cartoons – pointed oot the Nazis widnae huv made language lessons a tap priority if they’d won.)
Naw, sometimes jist using tried and trusted phrases can be best: think o’ all the time Mrs May wid have saved in her ‘‘negotiations’’ last week if somewan in the European Union hud jist greeted her wae the Caledonianism “Get tae.”
Of course, Donald Tusk wis pulling nae punches wae his “special corner of Hell” comment oan the final destination fur those who got us intae this Brexit midden. Still, Hell willnae be so much o’ a change frae whaur maist o’ them already live – London. And when they arrive, ah hope their corner isnae near the wans reserved fur us newspaper hacks, solicitors and IT experts.