Sunday, August 20, 2006

The Meme of 3

Paul Burgin at the increasingly unmissable Mars Hill Blog has done his entry for the Meme of 3 which is buzzing round the blogosphere at the moment. Here's my effort...

1... Things that scare me
When I'm on a flight, thinking just that little bit too much
about how planes actually get off the ground
A full blown Julian Dicks tackle
2.…People who make me laugh
Julie Walters
Sir Les Patterson
Frankie Howerd
3...Things I hate the most
Avocado & prawns
People who speak like Ashleen on Big Brother
Being overweight
4...Things I don't understand
How to get my new 10,000 station digital radio
working with my wireless internet connection
5...Things I'm doing right now
Watching the Test Match - Kevin Pieterson is out for 96
Listening to my dog, Gio, bark
Wondering what the week ahead is about to bring...
6...Things I want to do before I die
Write a political biography
See West Ham in the Champions' League
Become Secretary of State for Culture, Media & Sport
7... Things I can do
Speak near fluent German (well, I used to be able to!)
Not embarrass myself at golf
Unintentionally impersonate Rick Stein
8.Ways to describe my personality
Shy (but I manage to hide it!)
9. Things I can't do
Tie things - including shoelaces
Resist cheesecake
10...Things I think you should listen to
The national anthem sung at Twickenham
Me, when I'm on the radio!
Churchill's wartime speeches
11...Things you should never listen to
White people trying to talk 'ethnic'
Jose Mourinho or Sir Alex Ferguson. Take your pick.
Patricia Hewitt
12...Things I'd like to learn
How to play the piano
13...Favorite foods
Chicken Fajitas
Yorkshire Pudding
Baked Raspberry Cheesecake. Ok, let's be honest. Any cheesecake.
14...Beverages I drink regularly
I'm teetotal and hate tea or coffee, so...
Any kind of fruit juice
Sparkling mineral water
Britvic 55
15...Shows I watched as a kid
Val Meets the VIPs (Valerie Singleton)
Skippy the Bush Kangaroo
16...People I'm tagging (to do this meme)
Jonathan Calder (Liberal England)


The Hitch said...

Iain ,
I cannot believe for one minute that you are scared of a full blow off Julian Dicks tackle !
My name's Julian Clarey and I thank you.

Anonymous said...

still watching as a cricket game turns into the clash of civilisations?

Anonymous said...

Better warm up Iain, lad, I think a More4 re-match with MPAC over the Cricket looks highly likely - I mean we all know the MCC is nothing but a Zionist front organisation...

Anonymous said...

My meme is all about balls.

Anonymous said...

It’s Sunday and not much is happening, so here goes…

I would not say I'm fluent in German, but arrived in Düsseldorf with minimal knowledge of the language to work for my new German employer back about 1980 and, having been told it was a very difficult language to learn, found it in actual fact surprisingly easy, at least for me. I think being Scottish helps, for various reasons, but the main thing was the total immersion. Within three months I was thinking in German (except when having to translate; that's the hard bit) and a couple of months later was able to participate—both understanding and speaking--in management meetings that were conducted entirely in German.

By the way, I still find that when I return to Germany, I can get back into thinking in German again rather well in just a few hours—provided I don’t have any English speakers I have to translate for!

What's the point of this ramble?

Well, the company also had an office in The Hague and I had to make frequent trips to Holland. There I made a discovery: if you speak semi-decent German, Dutch sounds like a comic or spoof language; Germans (who despite rumours to the contrary most certainly have a sense of humour) have great difficulty taking it seriously and I still do myself. On the other hand, if you have decent German you can understand most of what you see written in Dutch (the very word is an English corruption of ‘Deutsche’); it’s a much more guttural language than German; and everyone there speaks excellent English anyway.

So I suppose the point is, what’s the point of learning Dutch?

The Daily Pundit said...

Meme! Meme! What's a bloody meme when it's at home!

Ever since you got on that A-list, Mr Dale, I've had to use a dikshionary every time I come here.

ian said...

See West Ham in the Champions' League
Next week, Iain Dale's recipe for the elixir of immortality.

A meme is an idea that spreads between people, or blogs. So called after the infinite self obsession of bloggers, "me! me!"

*some of the above I may have made up.

Iain Dale said...

Wymbrd, I have always liked gutteral languages. I was never any good at French but took to German like a duck to water. I can understand rudimentary Dutch, or at least get the gist of a conversation. I haven't spent a huge amount of time in Holland but enough to know that I'd love to be able to speak the language properly.

The Hitch said...

How can you not get to grips with French?
Most of the words we use each day are french, just pronounced a different way.

Scipio said...

Dutch! Good on you. I also speak German fluently, French converstionally, and order tucker in Italian and Spanish! I ALWAYS enjoy the looks of surprise when you speak to a people from these countries in their own language (except the French look contemptuously if the grammr is wrong, and the Ilatians laught at the accent).

But as I also know a smattering of Dutch, and what get elsewhere is nothing to the look of sheer and utter amazement on their faces when you ask for a beer (or hot chocolate) in Dutch!

My wife speaks Malay, and that simply freaks the Malay people out when they hear 'Urang Puti' (white man) speaking their language.

Its a lovely feeling, and goes a very long way to build bridges. I always make a habit of greeting people in their own language if I can.

Anonymous said...


Most of the words we use each day are french, just pronounced a different way.

Not so. Most words used in daily conversation are Anglo-saxon in origin, which is of course a German language closely related to Dutch.

Ian might like to consider learning Fresian, the closest language to English (except Scots) : "War de Drummel is de hammer?" -- "Where the Devil is the hammer?" (Which is all the Fresian I know.)

Anglo-saxon words also produce the most effective English, as Churchill knew well, and as can be seen in all his best-known speeches.


I was never any good at French but took to German like a duck to water.

Ich auch.

Have you come across 'An Irishman's Difficulties with the Dutch Language' by Jack O'Neill? (not listed by Amazon)

An extract:

"Mijnheer wil niet ontbijten?" Don't you want any breakfast? She rejoined. This was the biting again, so I said decidedly, "Neen, niet bijten." No, don't bite.

And of course I had to fast until five o'clock.

Anonymous said...

To lower the tone completely.Timeslip was one of my favourite programme when I was about 11-12.Can't remember if I liked it for the interesting story lines or for the pert breasts of the lead girl whose name I sadly can't remember

CityUnslicker said...


I have spotted a common spelling error.

The second sentence under para 11 should surely say 'Take your Prick.'

Barry Beef said...

Orange Britvic 55 si the greatest drink ever

Anonymous said...

Love points 10 and 11. Spot on sir!

Malcolm, the lass you were thinking of is Cheryl Burfield. There's a Timeslip website at which has a page about her. They don't make series like that any more.

. said...

irrelevant,really, but I see you are teetotal. So am I. Is there anywhere on the net for teetotalers? I've been looking for an hour now without success... apart from a vegan site!
Tom Bower