Blog translates British English for American Doctor Who fans

American Doctor Who fanfiction writers get schooled at this entertaining LiveJournal blog.

Aug 31, 2012, 10:55 am


Lauren Rae Orsini 

Lauren Rae Orsini

Each week we browse LiveJournal’s Popular Entries feature to unearth fascinating, obsessive, and sometimes bizarre communities for your perusal. There’s bound to be one just for you.

Nobody is going to think your Doctor Who fanfiction is believable if it involves the good Doctor eating an eggplant whilst riding an elevator. While those terms are acceptable in the U.S., Brits know that he’d take the lift and eat an aubergine.

Enter Doctor Who Britpicking, a LiveJournal community where U.K. residents school Americans (and people in all other countries) on correct British terminology for the purpose of accurate Doctor Who fanfiction. From slang to government structure, it’s a thorough guide of all the aspects of the British lexicon.

Whether or not you write fanfiction however, it’s a fantastic across-the-pond exchange for Americans to grasp British nuances, and Brits to figure out what Americans call everyday items.

Here are four recent queries and their answers:

1) A rude finger gesture

American: “In the U.S., a common rude gesture to insult someone is to ‘flip a bird’ which is basically raising your middle finger at someone.” —kelkat9

British: “Raise the hand with the forefinger and middle finger in a V shape, with your palm facing towards you. Well done. You have just told the recipient to f— off.” —ringbark

2) Under the influence of drugs

American: “getting high” —timelord1

British: “Stoned, getting wankered [also works for getting drunk], buzzed.” —xenaclone

3) Disgusting British food

American: “I’ve perused some UK food blogs and online stores and came across Prawn Cocktail Quavers which, to me anyway, sounds like something someone would only eat on a bet but I’d like to know what actual Brits think on it.” —donutsweeper

British: “Prawn cocktail-flavoured crisps are quite normal and not at all baulk-worthy IMO, but most tinned/processed meat products are dubious at best…” —bopeepsheep

4) This thing:

American: “In the states, it’s a merry-go-round.” —timelord1

British: “I’d call it a roundabout. This is what I’d call a merry-go-round.” —joyeuce

Photo by AntToeKnee Lacey/Flickr

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Last updated Mar 3, 2020, 3:04 am