Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Good English rocks

I love the esoteric and thought-provoking emails that get sent round the Times office by our chief revise editor, Richard Dixon. Such as this one:
"A stone is a small lump of rock that can be thrown by someone, eg, hypothetically, by an alleged protester at the police.

"In British English, a rock is too big to be thrown effectively in that way; however, chiefly in North American and Australian English, a stone that can be thrown is called a rock.

"As we aspire to British English, please make sure that we do not refer to a rock when we mean a stone."
I'm sure that I shall never confuse the two again. But what if someone throws a piece of Blackpool rock at the fuzz? Apart from the sticky mess it would leave on their day-glo jackets, I mean. Can we call that rock?


Southern Waratah said...

Here's hoping Phillip Hughes can become the rock of Gibraltar & bat for 2 days in Perth!

Paddy said...

Indeed, Waratah. And to think that we were all so scared of him in England at the start of the 2009 Ashes. He has a lot of reputation to recover.

Promise to do a few cricket posts later