Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Sherlock Holmes and South London

I have recently read a couple of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's Sherlock Holmes stories, and was thrilled to know that some of them, at least all of the ones I read take place in south London, mere blocks away from where I live. For example, in A Study in Scarlet, a murder takes place in Brixton Road, with mentions of Camberwell (home of the Camberwell Carrot) and other locations, while in The Sign of Four also happens in a broadly similar location in south London.

This can be mainly attributed to Doyle's living in Norwood, which is further south in London. Now the ironic part is that these parts of London remain a bit lawless, and Brixton and Camberwell are definitely no strangers to murder and knife crime nowadays.

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Sunday, August 17, 2008

English Language

This morning I was assailed by a deep linguistic question: is there any Daughter of a Bitch? Thinking closely on the matter, it seems odd that one can use the offensive term Son of a Bitch, SOB and whatnot, but it seems English-speaking women are impervious to this offensive term. Can a woman be a son of a bitch? I mean, it would be linguistically wrong, as this noun should agree with the gender of the target, is it not?

The story behind today's epiphany is more or less the following. As I came back from the supermarket this morning, I was confronted with a local English girl, not one of the types who speak the Queen's English, mind you, but rather the one that would be called a Chav around these parts. This girl was rather unpleasant, and sported a T-Shirt with the message "If you think I'm a bitch, you should meet my mother". The shirt immediately made me think, is she a bitch, or a ... a ... a what?

Now, to further this discussion, I urge any reader to provide some insight to me.