A MIDDLE-CLASS man cannot stop himself putting on a strange working-class accent when he meets people who do physical work.
Graphic designer Stephen Malley talks with a mildly posh accent until dealing with people doing things like cleaning out his gutters, at which point he will use phrases like ‘Alright mate?’.
Malley said: “The other day I caught myself saying ‘Safe, bruv’ to the callout plumber in a vaguely Essex accent. It came out before I could stop it. It’s like a class-based version of Tourette’s.”
Wife Sophie said: “It happens whenever Stephen encounters anyone with a more ‘manly’ job, who I think he sort of looks up to. It’s terribly embarrassing.
“You can’t take him anywhere. Last week a builder wolf-whistled at me and he shouted ‘Oi, that’s my bird, you muppet’. I’m sure he gets some of it from Eastenders.
“I live in fear of the day someone assumes he’s taking the piss and punches him in the face. It’s a miracle it hasn’t happened yet.”
Stephen Malley added: “If anyone gives me any grief I’ll deck the fucker. Sorry, I must apologise, I’ve been talking to our electrician.”