Saturday, February 06, 2010

one thing that was bothering me

(Click on drawing to view)
So America, there is a little chat I've been meaning to have with you. In fact, I've been meaning to have this chat for quite some time. I was reminded of this after seeing THIS POST by the rather fabulous Suzanne Cabrera. Listen up, apart from the very obvious 'fanny pack' (and, lets not go into that right now) I do believe that 'bangs' is the silliest word, I've ever heard, to call something. Something like your fringe. I mean really. Bangs? I want you to all stop using it immediately. Do you hear me?



Blogger Deborah said...

This is absolutely the most entertaining and wonderful page ever I believe! You are so funny and such a fantabulous artist! Fringe - okay...I must remember that. I agree - why "bangs" - I've never thought of it...hmmm.

1:18 AM  
Blogger Julie Browneyes said...

Fringe? That reminds me of the edges of a rug.

1:20 AM  
Blogger MaryO said...

The edge of a shawl or scarf? Well, if you say so.

1:39 AM  
Blogger Mooneybeams said...

I remember reading Little House on the Prairie and the sequels as a child and being completely and utterly bemused - bangs? What were bangs?

Julie and Mary - like the edge of a scarf or a rug, exactly - the fringey bit! It doesn't go 'bang', does it? Unless there's something seriously wrong, of course!

Beautiful drawing as always, Andrea!

1:54 AM  
Blogger Teri C said...

ROFLOL!!! Only you!!!

2:37 AM  
Blogger Panzer said...

The origin of bangs (the word is occasionally found in the singular bang), referring to a fringe of hair falling over the forehead (especially if cut square), is uncertain.

A common explanation, and the most likely one, is that bang(s) is short for bangtail. A bangtail is a horse's tail trimmed horizontally, so that the tail has a flat, even end, and hence a horse having such a tail. (By the early twentieth century, bangtail was used generically for 'a racehorse'.)

This leaves the question of the origin of bangtail. The word bang 'to strike violently' or 'a sudden striking blow or sound' has an adverbial sense 'suddenly; abruptly; completely; directly', as in "he walked bang up to me," "a slam-bang effort," or, closer for our purposes, "to cut (something) bang off." Our bangs is probably from this adverbial use, one way or another: either it comes directly from this adverb, or bangtail itself is from this adverb and bang(s) is short for bangtail.

The adverbial bang is recorded in the late eighteenth or early nineteenth century, depending on how you interpret the evidence. Bangtailed '(of a horse) having a bangtail' is found in the early 1860s, and bang 'fringe of hair' is first found in the late 1870s in America.

Ha! I learned something new! I am still going to call it "bangs" so that my hairdresser knows how I want my hair. *grins* Thanks for trying to change this American, but we have been saying it since the 1870's and I dont forsee it changing anytime soon.

Have a great day!

4:26 AM  
Blogger suzanne cabrera said...

Oh Andrea!!!! I love it, I love it, I love it. I give up, fringe it is!

4:29 AM  
Blogger Jules said...

hahahahahahah!! Oh Andrea!!! Oh Gosh!!! You courageous woman, you!! hohohhoho chortle chortle
Jules (London!)

10:45 AM  
Blogger JaneAlexandra said...

Thanks for making me smile this morning. I love your drawing and I heartily agree.


11:05 AM  
Anonymous suzanne.artist said...

I adore your work, wonderful sketches, very strong!

And yes, we Americans stand corrected they should be called "Fringe".

Suzanne in CT

12:09 PM  
Blogger ksklein said...

*lol.... oh I agree with you Andrea. I have always wondered what "bangs" are. And I keep forgetting the translation. "Fringe" is the English expression we use, but the German word isn´t better either. We say "Pony". :)

12:54 PM  
Blogger RetRomantic said...

Ahhhmm .. "Bangs" always sounded off to me ... but I'm not sre about the "fringe" either. Brings in my mind many other things with a meaning of something marginal and that, my friend, bangs or fringe is definetly not in our life. It is more like a statement and attention demand .. So we need to work on it ;)

2:08 PM  
Blogger Sally Ann Baker said...

so why do you call sausages "bangers"???

2:39 PM  
Blogger raena said...

Yes, we Americans can be the obnoxious siblings, can't we? But, it is so fun to say "bang" with an Emeril flair and watch everyone give a little jump! Wonderful sketches!

2:45 PM  
Blogger rrARTz said...

that was such a fun post and your illustrations are as gorgeous s always! thanks for the giggle!

4:04 PM  
Blogger Julie Varughese said...

OK, I accept the word fringe for wispy bangs, and I'll call them bangs when they're cut straight across, like a horse's tail! :D

4:16 PM  
Blogger Lesley said...

Ha ha ha!! Tell 'em sister!

4:44 PM  
Blogger phthaloblu said...

Such a great post. Made me smile. I hadn't even thought of the why until I read your commentary. I love the drawing as well and actually thought the smudges were purposely put there! Great design. But, I'm afraid I am one of those Americans that just doesn't like change so much. Calling my bangs "fringe" seems even weirder somehow. Thanks to Panzer for the probable origins of the word. Our language is so full of slang words that it would boggle the mind to try to find out the origins of all sayings.

4:58 PM  
Blogger G. said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

5:37 PM  
Blogger cristinoel said...

Well, now that you mention it...fringe may be a better term after all.

6:01 PM  
Blogger claire platt said...

I love this and whole heartedly agree! Bangs is a ridiculous word!(when refering to hear anyway)

7:10 PM  
Blogger Quilt Knit said...

Well, It is and will always be "Bangs". Just ask Mrs. Mamie Eisenhower, first Lady of the United States of America. That is why it is firmly established in our Society. You on the other hand may wear the Rug -Fringe- which also refers to wierd Alien and regrown dead people --- Ehuuuuuuuu!
Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha Ha!

Just love it.

7:25 PM  
Blogger vickylw (Vicky Williamson) said...

ROFL! I have thought for years the British term made more sense! You've given me the courage to start USING it!
Love the sketches! I also thought the ink blots & smudges were on purpose.

7:34 PM  
Blogger nanke's stuff said...

Well, well,well, this was certainly a provocative little drawing and posting now, wasn't it? Fringe, bangs, whatever we call them, your drawings and post are wonderfully done and gave me a really good laugh! nancy

8:00 PM  
Anonymous petescully said...

INNIT!!! I had no idea what they were talking about, 'bangs'. Took me a while to get that it was fringe. (Not quite up here with the time i was told about a bruised fanny, that one really took some figuring out...)

9:15 PM  
Blogger "JeanneG" said...

I'm going to be a rebel here. I have been calling them bangs for most of my 60 years and it would be too hard to change now. To me fringe is a sewing term.

11:34 PM  
Blogger andrea joseph's sketchblog said...

Thank you all, folks.

I'm so glad you took it in good humour - although I have had some messages that didn't quite take it in the same light! My own fault, of course, I should know by now that this kind of post usually gets people going. But I just want to reiterate;


Panzer, thank you. I feel like I have learnt something too. And, when used in the horsey context it makes more sense.

Kristen, pony???

Pete, innit just? I was once told to 'get my fanny over here' and was quite taken back by the very forward and direct request. I might just leave the 'fanny' post for a while, let the bang furore die down.

Thanks again, chucks.

11:42 PM  
Blogger Amy said...


It was always a fringe to me, too.
I've lived in America for several years now and along with degrees F, I STILL can't accept them as 'bangs'.

12:10 AM  
Blogger MrCachet said...

LOL!!! You're definitely on the 'fringe' with that one!

1:07 AM  
Blogger Dan Kent said...

In Oklahoma, here in the USA, they sing:

"Chicks and ducks and geese better scurry
When I take you out in the surrey
When I take you out in the surrey with the fringe on top

Watch that fringe an' see how it flutters
When I drive them high-steppin' strutters
Nosy pokes will peak through their shutters and their eyes will pop!"

among other things..
(From the musical Oklahoma)

Now, if you don't understand that, don't worry. That's how we talk on this side of the pond (in some parts). So here a bang can't be a fringe and there a fringe can't be a bang.

In other words: You say fringe, and I say bang. "So, let's call the whole thing off." (Louis Armstrong, singing Gershwin).

So there. (Cool drawing, by the way!)

3:32 AM  
Blogger Caroline B said...

Hooray, I'm behind you all the way here! If you're planning a rant about 'fanny' I can't wait to see the illustrations....

12:37 PM  
Blogger Alex said...

Hahahaha... couldn't agree more! Love the post, love the drawings even more. :)

9:19 PM  
Blogger stevmorpix said...

It's not our fault, you Brits made it up:

1:15 AM  
Blogger Mona said...

I can call em fringe, for sure. But what do you say about the hairstyle they call a "Shag"?? Ever since Austin Powers, I can't call it a shag style cuz it's just weird.

3:02 AM  
Blogger Razzmatazz said...

I've never heard of "fringe". That'll take some getting used to. I think it's funny that we have pharmacies/drug stores and you have the chemist's.

3:13 AM  
Blogger Rick said...

It's an elevator, not a lift.
It's an apartment, not a flat.
It's the top of the car, not the bonnet.
It's the trunk of the car, not the boot.
It's a vacation, not a holiday.
Shall I go on?

P.S. I'm breaking personal protocol and making your's the first blog that I official "Follow." (This is serious.)

3:27 PM  
Blogger Rick said...

But now that I said that, I can't figure out how to do it - so never mind.

3:30 PM  
Blogger G. said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

3:38 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

In response to Rick, it's also an arse and not an ass! An ass is a wild donkey, and the thing at the top of your legs is your arse (and it's certainly not your fanny either!) :)

4:38 PM  
Blogger faunawolf said...

I got caught on 'Tip-Ex', which I know as 'White-Out', but that's just a brand thing.
Could you illustrate an entry clarifying the difference between tank top, vest, and waistcoat, please? I keep getting it wrong.

4:38 PM  
Anonymous krista wells said...

When I was about 7 yrs old I took a flight from the east coast of Canada to the west. Because I was travelling alone I got special treatment. I was taken into the cockpit (there's a word for etimologists) and the pilot asked my if I ate bullets. I said "no, why?" He said "because you've got bangs coming out of your head". I don't remember jokes but that one stuck with me.

8:12 PM  
Blogger Rick said...

To Anonymous: My mommy would spank my fanny if she saw me making a comment like that one.

10:08 PM  
Blogger Spinneretta said...

LOL i still call it a fringe even though I live in the USA. I completely agree with you (even my kids call it a fringe!!).

1:09 AM  
Blogger andrea joseph's sketchblog said...

Wow, and thank you all again. I should have more digs at the Yanks - it gets so many comments. Joke joke JOKE.

Anyway, Rick, I know that we have different words for different things. I don't have an issue with that. I like it, too. What I have an issue with is such SILLy words. Like bangs!

I do, of course, have to follow up with a fanny/bum/arse post!!! I'm sure I'd get absolutely loads of hits with tags like that. I might throw in an Aussie thong, too.

Thanks again, everyone.
Cheerio, my ducks.

11:30 AM  
Blogger Rick said...

I hope that I didn't come across as sounding critical. I was just joining in the fun. "Bangs" is a funny word. But calling it a "Fringe" sounds funny to me too. Bangs, or fringe, I wish I had some.

3:47 AM  
Blogger andrea joseph's sketchblog said...

No, Rick, not at all. Hope I didn't come across as if you came across as critical??? You know what I mean! Haha.

I'm sure you'd look very pretty with some bangs...I mean fringe.

1:12 PM  
Blogger wagonized said...

It makes SOOOOOOO much more sense to me. Fringe. In French, "frange". Close enough. That's it, I'm sprinkling my American English with British-isms.
Love it.

1:00 AM  
Blogger Suzie Q said...

brilliant. so entertaining!
good on you for bringing it up :)

11:48 AM  
Blogger edgar cabrera said...

fringe it is! as of today no more bangs! you know i wouldn't mess with you!

5:43 PM  
Blogger Diane Smith said...

Here in California, we once had a neighbor who was from England. One day my daughter (who was probably around 4 or 5 at the time) turned to me and asked "What language do they speak in his country?"

Gotta love the thoughts of a child!

10:26 PM  
Blogger Diane Smith said...

Here in California, we once had a neighbor who was from England. One day my daughter (who was probably around 4 or 5 at the time) turned to me and asked "What language do they speak in his country?"

Gotta love the thoughts of a child!

10:26 PM  
Blogger andrea joseph's sketchblog said...

Thanks, chicks.

Edgar, I do believe you started all this???


1:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have to agree with Panzer's research about the origin of "bangs" as a hair term. I also use the word fringe - to mean more "wispy" bangs. Besides, if we all talked the same, and used the same words, what a boring world it would be, with no real differences between cultures.

2:03 PM  
Blogger 日月神教-向左使 said...


9:44 PM  
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1:22 AM  
Blogger Fiona Harrison said...

Thank you, and also for pointing out that a 'fanny' is not a butt!!

1:14 PM  

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