Freaky Brit names. was RE: [thechat] Celtic vs Chelsea at Seattle en Espanol

John Handelaar john at
Fri Aug 6 15:02:21 CDT 2004

> -----Original Message-----
> From: thechat-bounces at
> [mailto:thechat-bounces at]On Behalf Of Terry Fowler
> Sent: 06 August 2004 17:22
> To: The social mailing list 
> Subject: Re: [thechat] Celtic vs Chelsea at Seattle en Espanol
> I'm beginning to understand. I'm so accustomed to the
> idiom of "Place name Team Name" I've been a bit off
> balance with European teams. I see from another web
> site now that at least some EPL teams follow this
> idiom
> even though the "Team Name" is seldom used as far as I
> can see:

I'm loving this.  To us this post looks a bit daft, but
that's not your fault :-)  And in any case this is the UK's
primary job vis a vis norteamericanos - confusing the crap
out of you by being obtuse...

>       Arsenal Gunners  

Just the Gunners.  It's a nickname - the team's badge/logo/
coat-of-arms/whatever has a big cannon on it.

Londoners will insist that 'Arsenal' is a geographic name, 
by the way.  Even though the tube station of the same name
was named after the munitions factory, there was a big fat
munitions factory (or arsenal) there.  So large, in fact, that
in the late 1930s the station was renamed Gillespie Road for
a while in a rather optimistic attempt to put foreign 
intelligence off the scent.

>       Chelsea Blues  
>       Liverpool Reds  

Again, just 'Blues' or 'Reds'.  There's lots of other Blues and
Reds out there too (Aberdeen springs to mind for the latter) so
they're usually called just Chelsea or Liverpool unless everyone
knows who you're talking about in advance.

[Chelsea, incidentally, moved away from Chelsea long ago, but that's
another entirely different thread hijack.]

>       Manchester United Red Devils  

Nobody but the universally-reviled Man U fans ever call them anything
but 'Man U' or Manchester United..

>       Tottenham Hotspurs  

In fact the name of the club is Tottenham Hotspur Football Club.
This is one of the few that is almost universally referred to by
an abbreviation - Spurs - like Hibs in Embra.

Londoner that I am, I can bore you to tears with stories about
Milwall moving south of the river, Arsenal packing up and shifting
themselves to the other end of the borough, etc, making their
geographic names more or less meaningless.  Kinda like the Oakland
Raiders I suppose...

... and don't even get us started on Wimbledon FC, who appear not 
only to be leaving Wimbledon, but shipping out to Milton bloody
Keynes *and* changing their name to the lame-ass 'Milton Keynes Dons'
in the process.  And no, that's not a mafia reference. 

I can't be bothered with football.

Well, apart from Ireland or Scotland internationals, anyway.


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