family · How to be British · Language


Friday, June 9, 2017. Daily Brit Wit.


Verb, informal, no object with adverbial

Act in a foolish or desultory manner.

“She is lost. Well, she’s not lost, per se, but she lost her parents and therefore she’s been separated. Her steps are measured and confident, as the child navigates asphalt walkways. She smiles brightly at curious adults and when one or two of them quirk brows at her, she pretends to detect her parents and sprints further away. 

As she spots normal venues her parents like to frequent–coffee carts or that one bench tucked away by the pond or even that shelter house just up ahead–, desperation creeps up the little girl’s spine because she finds no sign of either parent. She hisses out a displeased exhale and turns to head toward the swings. If she’s going to be left behind, she’s glad she can at least swing.

She’s taken five steps when a distressed tenor calls out. She pauses, listening. It sounds like her papa…it is!


The nine-years-old girl spins on her heels, teeter but doesn’t fall, and spies her frantic looking papa several meters away. She dashes at him, hollering out for him, and he jogs to meet her halfway. Riley clings to her papa’s neck and wraps her legs around his torso in a silent demand that forces him to adjust and stand to hold her tightly. 

‘Why did you and Daddy just leave me here?’ She wails into his neck. 

‘What?’ He sputters, baffled by his daughter’s chastisement. ‘Love, what are you on about? Daddy was here–‘ 

Riley shakes her head. ‘No, you both left me to loon around the whole of England! Didn’t even invite me! At least I know my way ’round the park,’ she sobs.”


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