Taking The Mickey

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yogi
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Taking The Mickey

Post by yogi » 03 Apr 2015, 06:45

The managing director of Cumbria Tourism, Ian Stephen, has accused the artist, Oscar Santillan, of "taking the Mickey" because the artist trimmed off the uppermost one inch of England's highest mountain to display at an art exhibit in London. This story interests me for a couple reasons. First of all it seems to be a matter of national pride. Now that England's topographical stature has been reduced, some people are apparently offended. There might be some just cause to call it vandalism, but the artist feels he is making a valid statement. The second thing that interests me is the phrase "taking the Mickey." It sounds totally British to my American ears, and what does it mean anyway? :shrug:

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article ... -Bank.html

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Icey
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Re: Taking The Mickey

Post by Icey » 03 Apr 2015, 11:03

I found that amusing! So the top of the mountain's missing, but it doesn't detract from its rugged beauty. I've been halfway up Scafell Pike, and for those who trek to the summit, I bet they wished the top could've disappeared, to save their aching legs!

Taking the Mickey's Cockney rhyming slang I think. The actual expression means ...
"Taking the piss is a Commonwealth term meaning to take liberties at the expense of others, or to be unreasonable. It is often used to mean (or confused with) taking the piss out of, which is an expression meaning to mock, tease, ridicule, or scoff." It apparently comes from someone who was called Michael Bliss - hence the rhyming, and then abbreviated simply to "Mickey", which's commonly done.

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yogi
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Re: Taking The Mickey

Post by yogi » 03 Apr 2015, 14:24

I don't get what is rhyming, but I guess I don't have Cockney ears. :grin:

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pilvikki
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Re: Taking The Mickey

Post by pilvikki » 03 Apr 2015, 15:32

I think you need a brain wired differently, for for the life of me I could not get the hang of it. or point either.

here you go, i'm sure this explains it perfectly:

http://www.cockneyrhymingslang.co.uk/co ... ing_slang/


I really don't get it. why you'd say hampsteads instead of teeth.... :rolleyes:

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Icey
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Re: Taking The Mickey

Post by Icey » 03 Apr 2015, 17:02

That's right - Hampstead (Heath) - teeth. A Ruby (Murray) - curry. A whistle (& flute) - suit.

It must be difficult for people not familiar with Cockney rhyming slang to know what they're on about sometimes, because new words come out all the time. Under "Rhyming slang" in Vikki's link, it explains how these abbreviations come about, but unless you hear these expressions on a regular basis, it baffles those who hear them, and originally, this was the whole point of it. Londoners who dealt in contraband goods coming in off the docks developed a "code" so that they could discuss their shady dealings even if a police officer was nearby. In this way, they could pass on messages without others knowing what they were on about, but as time went on, the words became used in everyday conversation, so the original use became redundant.

I'd still like to know how a "sherbert" became the name for going for a beer though, unless it was something on the lines of a "sherbert dab - tab - ear - beer ...." : (

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pilvikki
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Re: Taking The Mickey

Post by pilvikki » 05 Apr 2015, 14:41

it's rather like its own sort of language.

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Icey
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Re: Taking The Mickey

Post by Icey » 05 Apr 2015, 15:38

It is. If you've ever listened to a Cockney in full flow, you have to keep up with him or you lose the gist, but most just come out with the odd expressions these days. I think it's quite nice, and foreign tourists often ask to listen to it, if only for a bemused laugh. : )

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