What kebabs and train tickets can teach you about Britain

The Guardian:

In the barber’s you will hear English as it is really spoken, full of sexism and swearing. You will realise the mix between Latin and Anglo-Saxon words in English leans more towards Anglo-Saxon among the masses. And you will discover what British people really think of politicians. Do not be shocked. This is how democracy works in a declining post-imperial country. People are in a constant state of rage and distrust, and the politicians just don’t understand why.

But there is a simple reason why, and you have already glimpsed it. Politicians rarely go into kebab shops and barber’s, or use the off-peak ticket choices at railway stations. When they go into pubs, it is to pose for the TV cameras with pints of beer they do not know how to drink; when they go into greasy spoon cafes, they cannot eat even a bacon sandwich (which is the British precursor to the kebab).

With your haircut, your kebab and your unwanted three-hour wait at Watford Junction, you have met enough real people, and heard enough real English, to go back to your accommodation and compare notes. For your next mission, you will be required to explain to your classmates an editorial from the Daily Mail. Enjoy our wonderful country.

Good article by Paul Mason on the “real” Britain.

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