Saturday, January 26, 2013

Arses and Ash Fault

I remember the first time that I heard the word "arse", I thought that someone had made a typo. Some Brit had made a comment about someone, and I knew by the context that he meant "ass".  Just in case I misunderstood, I looked up the word on the "internet". (I think at the time I was on AOL bulletin board system.) Sure enough, I got the definition for "arse" and it was no typo!

I hadn't thought of this for sometime. Being here in Canada, I almost feel like I am in the U.S. (or "the States" as Canadians call it. After all, I can watch American Idol - I must be in the U.S.).  The other day, one of the guys at Freedom's Door asked me to move my car. We had evidently been parking perpendicular to the street in violation of city ordinances. The inspector had come by and threating to write everyone a ticket.  "He was being such an arse about it!" Something clicked and I remembered the incident years earlier. Why are the Brits such an influence over Canada... still... rather than the U.S.?

Which leads to completely different questions. Why is A-S-P-H-A-L-T pronounced "ash fault", rather than the American way, "ass fault"? And why, if you have to have a reference to a guy's butt in the word, do the the Canadians not pronounce it "arse fault" or "bum fault"?

These are serious questions to ponder.

1 comment:

  1. Good questions, some things may be better left unknown.