Rant & Rave (07/04/13)

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The Independent Online


How disgusting to learn about the latest fad from the American workplace that has made its way to Britain: people bringing their dogs into work. Last week, Andrew Neil again brought his 10-month-old Labrador to the This Week studio, where guests were forced to tolerate its wet nose, dog breath, and dribble. Apparently it's even worse in the States, where trendy companies such as Amazon often have several dozen dogs scittering around. Please, Mr Neil, do not encourage it to catch on over here. People do not want a smelly, hairy animal rubbing against their legs while they are trying to do their jobs. (Nor do they want your dog in the office.)


We British are an unselfconfident lot, always worrying about how we fit in and what other people make of us. If we're not trying to figure out what class we are, we're trying to moderate our regional accents just to blend in. Thus found a survey by the fake grass company Trulawn last week, and a study of academics conducted at Newcastle University. More than one in five Britons will change the way they talk, found one, while the other reported that the academics are worried about being seen as "other". The obvious risk of altering your accent is sounding like George Osborne, who suddenly started talking all common last week when he addressed staff at a warehouse in Kent. He ended up looking like a proper plonker! So, let's all celebrate the accents and dialects that come naturally to us. Speaking of which: Why did the Scouse chicken cross the road softly? Because he couldn't walk hardly.