Ball Park

June 14th 2006

There is no doubt that the older you get the more awkward and intolerant you become. I don’t know whether or not it’s  because once you get past the age of sixty people expect you to be awkward and intolerant, and because you’re aware this is you take advantage of it, but it is a definite fact, and I am living proof of it. An example –

I went shopping for a new up and over garage door this morning as the other one has never been quite the same since The Trouble backed into it when she was going through the menopause (neither has The Trouble been quite the same for that matter, but whether it’s because of the menopause or backing into the garage door is not clear).

After taking the particulars of my garage door the salesman worked out a price and announced: “The ball park price is £210.”

If there’s anything that’s guaranteed to get my goat it’s the Americanisation of the English language. I treated him to a withering look, then in my best clipped Captain Mainwaring tone said: “What did you say?”

“It’ll be £200. Ball park.”

“Which ball park would that be then?”

“What?”

“Yankee Stadium? Shea Stadium? Candlestick Park?”

“I’m sorry?”

“They’re ball parks. Or perhaps it’s some other ball park to which you refer?”

  A shake of the head. “I’m not with you.”

“When you said the ball park price was £210?”

“…….It’s just a ball park price.”

“So it’s any ball park?”

“…….Well yes. I suppose. Any ball park.”

“So what’s the normal price then?”

“The normal price?”

“The price that isn’t the ball park price?”

“….Well it’s the same.”

“The same?”

“The same price. As the ball park price.”

“Then why call it the ball park price?”

“……Well…. well it’s just an expression.”

“Well here’s another expression. Stick your ball park price up your arse along with your up and over garage door.”

After shopping round all morning the best price I’ve been able to get for a new garage door is £230 so it looks like my awkwardness and intolerance will be costing me £20. But as this isn’t a ball park price it will cheap at the price.

4 Comments

  1. Many moons ago I got a replacement window sale. The opposition price was cheaper than ours. The customer told me this. “Why’d you choose me then?”
    “Because you said approximately and they said ball park. This is England so you win” (Apropus of nothing it was radio DJ Neil Fox’s parents house. His dad’s dead now. Nothing to do with a window falling on him as far as I know)

    Comment by Four Dinners — June 14, 2006 @ 3:08 pm

  2. Everyone around here seems to be losing the ability to pronounce t’s especially in ‘later’ and ‘twenty’ which I find odd because twenty becomes weny without t’s.

    Keep up the good work Terry – when are you going to kill You Twat off?

    Comment by Ian — June 14, 2006 @ 3:25 pm

  3. £20? cheap, and worth while. if only to protect the precious language of ours.
    people like him should be shot, preferably IN a ball park, with a large audience! more so because he didn’t have a clue what it meant. my two teenage neices are the same. i blame friends!

    Comment by fatfiz — June 14, 2006 @ 4:40 pm

  4. I’m really annoyed at the anglicisation of the Latin language. It’s not *the* Magna Carta, you know; it’s just Magna Carta.

    Where was it signed?

    At the bottom. Hohohoho.

    Sorry, I misheard you, when you said garage door, I thought you said Magna Carta.

    Comment by Post Punkunkle — June 17, 2006 @ 8:18 am

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