It is always great to have Matthew home. It takes me awhile to get back into his quirky humour and his strange use of the english language. He has a very cryptic mind and we refer to him as "Jude" (the Obscure). Gareth started these nonsense word games and I think he got it from Grandad Dick (my step-dad). He loved puns (the corny ones I remember and the clever ones often went over everyone's head) and crosswords. He taught the boys bits of cockney slang and I think that is where Gareth started making up words. One of the first ones that I remember was when I called Gareth one day from the office. I asked him who was at home with him and his answer was "Just me and Pieter Dirk"."Who is Pieter Dirk?". "Pieter Dirk Uys" (South African comedian), he replies. Anyway the play of words was on Uys "I am on my Uys (own)" but that has now been taken a step further and if ever they are on their own they now say "I'm on my Pieter Dirk" or "Only me and Pieter Dirk".
Matthew played rugby with a guy called Michael Passaportis. Jude (Matthew) called me one day to ask me where his Michael was. "Michael?" In the "Book according to Matthew" a passport is now called a Michael. He no longer plays rugby with the guy but he still calls a passport a "Michael" (and the weird thing is that I know what he is talking about). Still on the sporting front they will ask each other "Where did you Lawrence the car?" (Lawrence Sephaka (park)). Matthew also gets very Solly if he does not make the team (Solly Tyibilika (bleak)). Hershelle Gibbs (top cricketer and party animal of note who once admitted that he had never read a book in his life) is another victim of Rossleeisms. Nic will sometimes "do a Gibbs" on a book (not going to read it) or Gareth will have had "a real Hershelle" (serious party).
While in Canada in 2009 with Michael's family, his mom (then 89) and with a slightly dodgy memory was able to recite the entire cockney alphabet along with a few of the Kotze clan. I did not understand much of it and needed it explained to me. I still did not understand it and after finding it in one of my books the other day, I now "kind-of" get it thanks to Google.
- A for 'orses (hay for horses)
- B for mutton (beef or mutton)
- C for yourself (see for yourself)
- D for 'ential (deferential)
- E for Adam (Eve or Adam)
- F for 'vescence (effervescence)
- G for police (Chief of Police)
- H for respect (age for respect)
- I for the girls
- J for cakes (Jaffa cakes)
- K for Sutherland (Keifer Sutherland) - new one, or K for 'teria (cafeteria)
- L for leather (Hell for leather)
- M for 'sis (emphasis)
- N for 'adig (in for a dig, or infradig)
- O for the garden wall (over the garden wall)
- P for relief (pee for relief)
- Q for chips (queue for chips)
- R for mo' (half a mo')
- S for you (it's for you)
- T for two (tea for two)
- U for 'mism (euphemism)
- V for La France (Vive la France)
- W for a bob (double you for a bob)
- X for breakfast (eggs for breakfast)
- Y for crying out loud (why, for crying out loud)
- Z for breezes (zephyr breezes) - explain please
If you are interested enough and need to translate, take a look here.
I remember driving to that school with step-dad Dick and Lesley one morning. I was asking Lesley to explain a couple of jokes to me that I did not understand (Lesley always understood jokes having been blessed with an older brother and I was a bit doff in that department). Confession: I used to hear the jokes on the weekend and write them in my diary to ask her for an explanation on the Monday morning. Remember those corny ones "Why is Ms. Yardley smiling?" "Because Max Factor". Okay that one was explained slowly to me by her. Next one "Please put it in your Palmolive". Lesley blushed brighter than Ms. Yardley ever could and Dickles put Radio 5 (which he hated) on full volume.