As young men and women leave York to start university, Kayleigh Bell offers a personal insight into the world of the Yorkshire exile
We all know that Yorkshire is the centre of the universe and thus York is the capital, the hub, the beehive of this majestic county.
Unfortunately the rest of the UK population are not so enlightened. This September many brave souls, also known as freshers, will be leaving the safe, bountiful bosom of Yorkshire and selflessly heading out across the country as missionaries for our often misunderstood culture.
For these fresh-faced juveniles I have a few words of wisdom based on my own haphazard experiences as a Yorkshire lass in the depths of London. Brace yourself young’uns for things are about to get weird.
1. T’jolly jokes
Non-Yorkshire people will repeat back everything you say in a “comical” Yorkshire accent or add a ‘t’ in front of or behind every word during impressions of your voice. The impressions will in no way represent correct Yorkshire grammar (for example: “‘ere love will’t put t’kettle on’t”) and you will most likely spend a large portion of your life explaining how to use glottal stops effectively. Words containing vowels will also become your nemesis.
2. Fewer food choices
Don’t go into a chip shop and ask for scraps or gravy. They will look at you like you just asked for a fried gerbil. I have found it useful to carry around a small tub of gravy granules in case I’m faced with dry potato produce at meal times.
3. Tube suspicion
Expect any attempt to smile or greet a stranger, particularly on public transport, to be met with a horrified grimace and the presumption that you are insane / a murderer / a terrorist / a pervert. Starting up a conversation or even making intentional eye contact with a stranger, is in most cases, the social equivalent of licking their ear or twisting their nipple.
4. Strange rituals
Be wary of social arrangements involving food. The evening meal known to us as “tea” doesn’t exist in many places across the UK. People outside of Yorkshire call their midday meal “lunch” instead of “dinner” and their evening meals “dinner” instead of “tea”. I know it’s backwards but just remember to be accepting of their strange customs.
5. Farm talk
Most people you meet will presume you live on a farm or in a small hamlet reminiscent of Emmerdale. It is best to embrace this by talking at length about your turnip crop and the merits of wearing flat caps. Insist that your most frequently used form of transport is a tractor or horse and cart.
6. Destitution. Or sobriety
Unless you are moving further up north then the likelihood of you being able to part with any less than £4 for a pint is remote. I can only assume that all beer south of Leicester is made of liquefied gold. On the plus side unless you are loaded there is less chance of you drinking so much that you gip under the table in a pub.