I’ve found that the funniest things are the most relatable things. That is something I felt while reading one of the funniest books ever and spending half the time nodding at what was written. I’m talking about Rob Temple’s Very British Problem’s which lists all the awkward, embarrassing, humiliating things that we brits do, referring to social situations, excessive apologising, and the many faces of weather.
Anyway I’ve gathered up some of the lines in the book that I can relate to the most:
“Feeling obliged to ask a taxi driver if they’ve “been busy”, but then staying silent for the rest of the journey.” Taking Ubers alone bring the most awkward of silences.
“Looking into having your hands surgically removed after waving at someone who was waving at someone behind you.” Worst. Thing. Ever.
“Getting a bit too excited when you see your home town on the news.” Two minutes of me going “I’ve been there! I’ve been there!”
“Someone has just pushed in front of you in a long queue. What’s your reaction?
A: What’s a queue?
B: What’s a queue?
C: Feeling like you’re about to faint with the silent rage pulsing through you, only noticeable by the throbbing vein on your forehead.” C C C!!!!
“Saying you’re going for a “cheeky pint”, meaning you won’t be home until Tuesday.” It’s basically saying “I’ll just have one drink” and then not making it out the house.
“Switching from “kind regards” to “regards” as a warning that you’re dangerously close to losing your temper.” I’m an ace at passive aggressive emails.
“Standing ready to exit the train a full ten minutes before your station.” I just worry I’ll miss my stop.
“Repeatedly pressing the door button on the train before it’s illuminated, to assure your fellow commuters you have the situation in hand.” I don’t want them to get impatient.
“Subtly glancing at the luggage rack to indicate to the person next to you that you’re going to have to get up soon.” We all know the slowing packing up bag, putting on coat and glancing around indication that you’ll be getting up soon.
“Being unable to turn and walk in the opposite direction without first taking out your phone and frowning at it.” If I just randomly turn around in the street everyone will think I’m an idiot.
“Summarising that you, “wouldn’t say it tasted great” to indicate it’s possibly the most revolting dish you’ve ever encountered.” Those butter soaked muscles at a French restaurant were certainly not the best I’d had.
“Trying not to be rude when you have 28 items in your basket no bag and are asked if you need a bag.” Most annoying thing ever, like yes I’m happy to carry my milk, peas and two bottles of cherryade in just my hands.
“Plucking up the confidence to admit you’re completely indifferent towards Marmite.” Yep I’m neither a lover nor a hater. It’s nice to have occasionally but it’s no Nutella.
“Apologising as a way of catching someone’s attention.” Well what else am I meant to say?
“The overwhelming dread which accompanies the sentence: “Before we start, let’s just go round the table and say a bit about ourselves.” Like what am I meant to say at this point? Hi I’m Katie. I know all the lyrics to All Star (well who doesn’t), I think the funniest things are celebrities playing Spill Your Guts Or Fill Your Guts and can eat a whole jar of Biscuit Spread without being sick. I apologise in advance if I’m not listening, but I tend to start thinking about the most efficient way to arrange the frozen meals in my freezer. Ok who’s next?
The point is go read Very British Problems. You’ll choke on your tea but it’ll be worth it.