You're not really British, Cockney

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CockneyRebel
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08 Jan 2024, 7:06 pm

I go to a clubhouse for people who have mental health issues. I go there because I have Depression, Anxiety and Psychosis.

Back in the September of 2012, the staff and members from my clubhouse were invited to a nice barbeque that was hosted by a couple who was a regular sponsor of the clubhouse. I was having fun, talking about The Kinks and how I wanted to go to London. As I sat down in my spot in the van, I told Dean and Barb how proud I was to be British. An older member who was in his 60s at the time said to me, "You're not really British, Cockney."

How in the HE-double toothpicks did he pick up on that in 2012, 4 years before I've decided to stop hiding behind the Union Jack in the January of 2016, start being true to myself and start being honest about myself. How did he know that, 4 years before I confessed that I prefer Germany over Britain and I made peace with the fact that I take after the Germans and Austrians in my family tree more than I take after the English, Irish and Scottish on my dad's side or the French and English on my mum's side. I dressed like a male Mod, talked about The Kinks and my dream trip to London, so how did he know?


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08 Jan 2024, 7:12 pm

I wouldn't assume he was suggesting you're German, rather than he was saying you're not British because you're Canadian. Unless he ever said something to specifically imply he thought you were German, it seems fair to assume that he was identifying as you as being Canadian.

It's not as though you were raised in either Germany or the UK, were you?

You know that saying about when you hear hooves, it's typically horses? In the case, him concluding you're Canadian based on where you were raised is the horses. Him assigning any other nationality to you would be a zebra.


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08 Jan 2024, 7:17 pm

funeralxempire wrote:
I wouldn't assume he was suggesting you're German, rather than he was saying you're not British because you're Canadian. Unless he ever said something to specifically imply he thought you were German, it seems fair to assume that he was identifying as you as being Canadian.

It's not as though you were raised in either Germany or the UK, were you?

You know that saying about when you hear hooves, it's typically horses? In the case, him concluding you're Canadian based on where you were raised is the horses. Him assigning any other nationality to you would be a zebra.


That makes sense


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CockneyRebel
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08 Jan 2024, 7:28 pm

Another question. How is it that when I was 12 and my sister was 9 that I reminded her of Schultz when I quipped in my best Cockney accent that I was Peter Newkirk? I had Union Jacks all over my bedroom, I listened to The Beatles and The Kinks all the time and I talked about Scotland and England a lot. I was also pestering our mum asking her why we didn't drink tea in the afternoon. I wanted a German helmet, but nobody in my family knew and not even my sister. There was one night that I did pray that The Berlin Wall would come down in my lifetime that summer, but that's about it. I was listening to German marches on the CBC when nobody else was in my bedroom until my mum put an end to that. I listened to British Rock on the radio when my sister was in my room. I even said, "Once a Cockney, always a Cockney" to get back at my parents for telling me not to talk through my nose every time I opened my mouth to speak. I was trying hard to be British to fit in and wear the family name and I reminded my sister of the most German Hogan's Heroes character.

How did my sister pick up on it 29 years before the fact? I mean before I made peace with myself.


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08 Jan 2024, 7:41 pm

Cockneys were never very representative of Britishness at any time, and these days they hardly exist at all, for reasons which it has become increasingly difficult openly to discuss. 'We hate the Cockneys' was a very popular chant on English football grounds in the 1960s and 1970s, but at least back then most people had some idea what a Cockney was.

Not stating this as a form of denigration or value judgment, just making an attempt at an objective observation.


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08 Jan 2024, 7:42 pm

DeepHour wrote:
Cockneys were never very representative of Britishness at any time, and these days they hardly exist at all, for reasons which it has become increasingly difficult openly to discuss. 'We hate the Cockneys' was a very popular chant on English football grounds in the 1960s and 1970s, but at least back then most people had some idea what a Cockney was.

Not stating this as a form of denigration or value judgment, just making an attempt at an objective observation.


That also makes sense.


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08 Jan 2024, 7:54 pm

CockneyRebel wrote:
Another question. How is it that when I was 12 and my sister was 9 that I reminded her of Schultz when I quipped in my best Cockney accent that I was Peter Newkirk? I had Union Jacks all over my bedroom, I listened to The Beatles and The Kinks all the time and I talked about Scotland and England a lot. I was also pestering our mum asking her why we didn't drink tea in the afternoon. I wanted a German helmet, but nobody in my family knew and not even my sister. There was one night that I did pray that The Berlin Wall would come down in my lifetime that summer, but that's about it. I was listening to German marches on the CBC when nobody else was in my bedroom until my mum put an end to that. I listened to British Rock on the radio when my sister was in my room. I even said, "Once a Cockney, always a Cockney" to get back at my parents for telling me not to talk through my nose every time I opened my mouth to speak. I was trying hard to be British to fit in and wear the family name and I reminded my sister of the most German Hogan's Heroes character.

How did my sister pick up on it 29 years before the fact? I mean before I made peace with myself.


I think we'd need to ask her. It could be something reminded her of him personally, or it could be something 'German' but without her insight we'd just be guessing.


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08 Jan 2024, 8:01 pm

funeralxempire wrote:
CockneyRebel wrote:
Another question. How is it that when I was 12 and my sister was 9 that I reminded her of Schultz when I quipped in my best Cockney accent that I was Peter Newkirk? I had Union Jacks all over my bedroom, I listened to The Beatles and The Kinks all the time and I talked about Scotland and England a lot. I was also pestering our mum asking her why we didn't drink tea in the afternoon. I wanted a German helmet, but nobody in my family knew and not even my sister. There was one night that I did pray that The Berlin Wall would come down in my lifetime that summer, but that's about it. I was listening to German marches on the CBC when nobody else was in my bedroom until my mum put an end to that. I listened to British Rock on the radio when my sister was in my room. I even said, "Once a Cockney, always a Cockney" to get back at my parents for telling me not to talk through my nose every time I opened my mouth to speak. I was trying hard to be British to fit in and wear the family name and I reminded my sister of the most German Hogan's Heroes character.

How did my sister pick up on it 29 years before the fact? I mean before I made peace with myself.


I think we'd need to ask her. It could be something reminded her of him personally, or it could be something 'German' but without her insight we'd just be guessing.


That also makes sense. I was thinking about that, especially the something German. Even under all that red, white and blue she picked up on it.


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08 Jan 2024, 8:08 pm

Come to think of it, I had Swastikas drawn all over my Social Studies binder that year and my sister swiped it off my desk and asked our dad, "What are those funny symbols?" I kept on saying that those were special crosses.


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08 Jan 2024, 8:10 pm

I'm pretty sure that my sister could hear me listening to the CBC through her bedroom wall.


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08 Jan 2024, 8:16 pm

I didn't always speak with a Cockney accent. I thought I'd give it a whirl the day after a mentally challenged boy asked me if I was German when I told him that a couple of boys in my regular class were making fun of the way I talk, because my voice was deeper than average. I was 11 at the time and the boy who asked the question was 10. I saw myself as the perfect Anglo-Canadian specimen. I gave it a whirl for 30 years and than I started talking with my normal voice again in 2016.


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08 Jan 2024, 8:29 pm

Another question but about myself this time.

Why was I so afraid to be myself those 30 years, I hid myself behind a screen of British colours to look cool, impress others and please my family. Why couldn't I accept myself at the age of 11, wear German colours and say to the world, "This is me!" What was I so afraid of?


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08 Jan 2024, 8:50 pm

What you're talking about is 'identity' or at least a facet of it. Undoubtedly this has become a huge driving force in politics and cultural life in Western societies over the past two decades. I do have a feeling though that this and other factors (like the drive to 'Net Zero') could devastate living standards and quality of life generally in these societies over the next decade or so, and force many people in the younger age groups to concentrate on basic issues such as how to put a roof over their head, how to feed themselves and how to access basic resources like heating and lighting. People like you and me may avoid the worst consequences of this, but that doesn't make me feel very much better about it.


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08 Jan 2024, 8:54 pm

Greater awareness and acceptance surrounding gender identity is improving the living standards and quality of life for a lot of people right now.


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08 Jan 2024, 8:56 pm

I'd like to believe that, but..... :wink:


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08 Jan 2024, 9:00 pm

It's a better time for various members of WP. Sometimes it's difficult to appreciate something if we haven't experienced it ourselves.


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