Pronoia: The opposite of paranoia. The belief that the universe is conspiring to better you.
Idiolect: A person’s individual speech pattern.
Apricity: The warmth of the sun in Winter.
Mudita: The opposite of schadenfreude. Sympathetic or vicarious joy, the pleasure that comes from delighting in other people’s well-being.
Oneirataxia: The inability to differentiate between dreams and reality.
Quaintrelle: A woman who emphasizes a life of passion expressed through personal style, leisurely pastimes, charm, and cultivation of life’s pleasures.
Elucubrate: To produce a piece of work by intensive effort at night.
Philalethist: A lover of the truth.
Darkle: Opposite of sparkle. To become clouded or gloomy.
Deuteragonist: The second most important character in a drama.
Psithurism: The sound of rustling leaves.
Potvaliancy: Brave only as a result of being drunk.
Psychopomp: a deity or creature who guides souls to their underworld.
I made eye contact with a stranger on the tube. We both looked away out of the window, and our reflections made eye contact.
Now that Thatcher’s actually dead, it’s not really all that funny to joke about her dying anymore.
I’ve worn a nice black dress to work today, and now everyone’s asking if it’s for Margaret.
I gave tourists directions that were in the same way I was walking, so I stopped and waited for a bus instead, rather than suffer the embarrassment of walking alongside them. The bus took 15 minutes to arrive. When I got off just two stops later, I was right next to the tourists again.
Not knowing whether to search for “United Kingdom”, “Great Britain” or “England” on drop down boxes.
I was asked by a friend if I knew there was a UK version of The Office.
The window cleaner is here. So I can’t look outside or do anything for about 15 minutes.
I asked a non-British person how their weekend was and they actually answered instead of just saying “fine, thanks”.
I offered to make the plumber a cup of tea, but the kettle is right by the boiler and I kept getting in his way until he asked me to stop. Then he made tea for both of us.
There has been a bright yellow thing in the sky for the last couple of days and I am worried it is a meteor.
I’m trying to immerse myself in Game Of Thrones but every time Jon Snow is mentioned I picture the Channel 4 newsreader.
It’s snowed in March and now society has broken down.
I accidentally said hello to someone I walk past every morning on my way to work. Now I’ll have to change to a longer route, or quit my job. Or kill them.
It’s 4.35, it’s dark outside, and it’s been raining for about 11 years.
The man currently having his hair cut is making lots of witty and friendly conversation with the barber. I’m next.
Choosing a language on a website and having the English option represented by a US flag.
I just ate a Penguin biscuit and threw away the wrapper before remembering to look at the joke.
Yesterday, I arrived at a mini-roundabout simultaneously with two other drivers from other directions. We’re still here.
I’m supposed to write a CV but documenting the reasons I’m great goes against everything I’ve ever believed in.
It takes me ten minutes to write a one line email because I’m constantly worrying that I’ll sound too formal/informal/patronising/rude.
I live outside the UK so when I say “With all due respect” nobody realises I’m insulting them.
I lost a biscuit in my cup of tea and tried to get it out with another biscuit and now my cup is full of biscuits.
It has gone quite cold again, but having already worn shorts this year I feel duty bound to continue wearing them.
I can’t tell if my washing is still wet or just cold.
- Penguins have a gland near their beaks converts salt water into fresh water. Once the gland gets full, a penguin will knock his beak on a rock to empty the salt out.
- If a bryophyte (e.g. moss) runs out of water, it just goes into suspended animation and comes back to life when it gets water. Which means, theoretically, mosses can live forever. This condition is referred to as poikilohydry, which is the ability to dessicate (dry out) without damage.
- Tropical rainforests in the Amazon have their soil nutrients periodically replenished by the Sahara Desert. Wind blows dust particles all the way from the desert, across the ocean, to the tropics where the sand and its associated nutrients help the fertility of the rainforest.
- The bacteria inside your body takes on an evolutionary path that is specific to you and contains species that are different from anyone else’s bacteria. As well as the fact that there are (on average) more bacteria housed in your body than people in the world.
If I didn’t already speak English, I would hate it
- “Apparent” can mean “obvious” or “seeming, but in fact not”.
- “Awful” can mean “worthy of awe” or “very bad”.
- “Back” can mean “regressive” as in “to go back in time”, or it can mean “progressive” as in “to push back a deadline”.
- “Buckle” can mean “fasten securely” as in “buckle your seat belt”, or it can mean “fall apart” as in “buckle under pressure”.
- “Citation” can mean “commendation” or a “summons to appear in court”.
- “To cleave” can mean “to cling” or “to split”.
- “To dust” can mean to remove dust (cleaning a house) or to add dust (dust a cake with powered sugar).
- “Fast” can mean “moving quickly” as in “running fast,” or it can mean “not moving” as in “stuck fast.”
- “To fight with someone” can mean “to fight against someone” or “to fight alongside someone”.
- “Impregnable” can mean “able to be impregnated” or “incapable of being entered”.
- “Moot” can mean worthy of discussion or not worthy of discussion.
- “Nonplussed” can mean surprised and confused, but has come to mean unperturbed in North American English.
- “To overlook” can mean “to inspect” or “to fail to notice”.
- “Oversight” (uncountable) means “supervision”, “an oversight” (countable) means “not noticing something”.
- “Off” can mean “deactivated” as in “to turn off”, or it can mean “activated” as in “the alarm went off”.
- “Redundant” can mean “useless” or “extra caution”.
- “Refrain” means both non-action and the repetition of an action, e.g. in musical notation.
- “Resign” can mean “give up or quit” or “continue”.
- “To sanction” can mean “to permit” or “to punish”.
- “Shelled” can mean “having a shell” or “has had the shell removed” (as in shelling).
- “To skin” means “to cover with skin” (as in to skin a drum) as well as “to strip or peel off” (as in to skin an animal).
- “To stint” means “to stop”, but the noun “stint” refers to the interval of work between stops.
- “Strike”, in baseball terms, can mean “to hit the ball” or “to miss the ball”.
- “Unpacked” can refer to a container with objects still in it, or a container with the objects removed.
- “To weather” can mean “to endure” (as in a storm) or “to erode” (as in a rock).
- “Weedy” can mean “overgrown” (“The garden is weedy”) or stunted (“The boy looks weedy”).
- “Yield” can mean “to produce” (as in a chemical equation) or “to concede” (as in driving).
- “Ravel” can mean to combine thread or to separate it.
- “Terrific” can mean “very good” or “very bad”.