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Ten ways to annoy a Brummie

Written by
Alexi Duggins

OK, so it might not be that hard. But if you really want to get our goats...

1. Accuse us of being Americanised
We know, ok? We know exactly how people from the US pronounce the abbreviation for ‘mother’. We do have tellies in the Midlands – you never heard of Pebble Mill? And yeah: we’re also fully aware that in the rest of the UK, people say ‘mum’. Brummies just say ‘mom’. It’s like the way that people from Manchester say ‘sound’ when they mean ‘good’. Or the way Londoners use ‘flat’ to mean ‘extortionately-priced cupboard’.

2. Force us to take the escalators in the Bullring

Busy escalators at the Bullring, Birmingham - Mark Hillary

Moving stairs of doom

Photo: Mark Hillary

3. Dispute our interesting statistics about canals
Yes, mate. It IS true. Brum does have more miles of canals than Venice. Why the Christ would we make that up? You think that a committee of Midlanders sat down, racked our brains for the ultimate sexy, headline-grabbing stat to showcase our city’s sophisticated 21st century vibrance and went ‘Ooh! What about waterways!?! TOWPATHS MAKE ME GIDDY.’? We just have bloody loads of canals, ok? If you like, we could show you around them some time. Wait! Where are you going?

4. Badmouth our restaurants
Come on, guys! Sure, Brum doesn’t look like the kind of city that’d be packed with mouth-watering culinary sophistication. But hey, we know our food. Baltis. Chinatown. Digbeth Dining Club. More Michelin stars than any British city outside of London. There’s a lesson here – appearances can be deceptive. Trust us on this. Otherwise you’re gonna be very disappointed by Selfridge’s and its distinct lack of alien robo-staff from the future.

5. Be a flash git
You know why people think that Manchester’s the second city? Because we’re not show offs. Other cities might like to wang on about how brilliant they are all the time, but that ain’t how we do in Brum (see also: volume levels at Villa Park). We prefer to just know we’re good without having to rub it in everyone’s face all the time. Besides, if we did, all our mates’d take the piss.

6. Do our accent
Sigh. Very good. The way we speak amuses you. Yes yes: wonderful Jasper Carrott impression. What? ‘Faggits and pois?’ Oh. You’re making some kind of joke about eating faggots. Right. Brilliant. Tell you what: let’s take your hilarious fake Brummie accent down to Hurst St. That’s right. Just make sure you keep loudly saying the word ‘faggot’. Wait, what’s that? Oh. You DIDN’T want one of our awesome gay population to boot your arse up into your tonsils? Oopsie…

Faggots and peas - Frontline Blogger

Tasty, tasty faggits

Photo: Frontline blogger

7. Fail to acknowledge the middle ground
Quick quiz: know what you call the portion of the week that’s between the start and the end? That’s right: ‘Midweek’. The bit of a river halfway between each bank? Uh-huh: ‘Midstream’. So, for the 20 million dollar question: what do you reckon the lands between the North and South of England should be called? ‘The Midlands’? Or ‘The North’?

8. Ask us to drive to New Street station
The traditional Brummie greeting for friends and family who’re coming up to town for the weekend? 'Oh Jesus. Not Smallbrook Queensway. On… on a Saturday? WHY COULDN’T YOU HAVE GOT THE TRAIN TO SNOW HILL?' Given a route that’s as fast-moving as a snail on morphine, though, who can blame us? And besides, if visitors ain’t getting that as a greeting, they’re getting: 'Yeah, we know. But if you think this is bad, you should’ve seen the last Digbeth Coach Station.'

Holloway Circus leading to Smallbrook Queensway - Tim Ellis

Please don't make me do it

Photo: Tim Ellis

9. Be a Fox News pundit
Shit! Guys! They’re onto us! Fox News has realised that the Rotunda is in fact a humungous muezzin, that we’re soon going to put a burkha onto the Floozy in the Jacuzzi, and that we’re planning to march upon a shop on Smallsbrook Queenway and forcibly change its name to ‘Nost-halal-gia and Comics’. Quick! Run for the mountains! (Or ask Muhammad to move them to us.)

10. Be a member of our council
Good old Birmingham City Council, eh? They go ahead and build us a flash new library. It’s lovely and shiny. There’s a massive swish roof garden. It’s so tall you no longer need to sneak to the top of the Hyatt Hotel to have awesome views over Centenary Square. All is excellent. Or at least it would be if they’d remembered that you need to pay staff to keep the place open. Seriously, Council people: you do know that smartarses in the national press already take the piss out of our city, right? Stop giving them an excuse!

Featured image: Miroslav Petrasko

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