Posted by TheFallen on December 09, 2004
In Reply to: Don't laugh at the back. posted by Smokey Stover on December 09, 2004
: : : To Miri Barak: If you've followed discussions here for the past few days, you know that I complained about the excess of posts from people who are apparently studying English and ask elementary questions.
: : : I want to assure you that I didn't mean your posts. Your questions are more interesting than the ones I was thinking of, you don't post twelve of them in a day, and you express appreciation for the help received here.
: : : Because the rules for this forum have changed, however, I can't say "Go ahead and ask." I don't want to post my e-mail address here. Instead, if you join the ezboard network of forums (it's free) and then click below, you'll find a page that includes something like a mailbox where you can send me a message. We can then work out a way to continue getting you some help in interpreting difficult passages of English.
: : Problem seems to be that there is proportionately more off-topic than there used to be. I don't mind - I enjoy on-line communities and don't mind helping people inderstand things - it is ingrained as a lawyer (don't laugh at the back!) - this site is based aroud discussing the origins of words/phrases and if Gary thinks it has become too unfocused, well that is his prerogative - but let us not seem less considerate and hostile towards people who have English as a second or subsequent language. We may form part of the community of the prime language group, but let us be inclusive so far as possible. My ancestors probably had l'tin as a second lanuage, after all.
: : Lewis
: :First comment. I second Bergie's message to Miri Barak, source of so many interesting questions. Second comment. Don't laugh at the back? This is probably Brit-speak, but what does it mean, Lewis? Laugh in the back of the room? Laugh behind your hand? (That is, at the back of your hand.) Obviously this falls into the category of legitimate Sayings, so out with it. P.S. Obviously "out with it" (with or without exclamation point) is an expression with more than one meaning. One is the order to remove "it" or the desire to see "it" removed. However,I'm using it to urge you to say it, bring it out where I can see it, or hear it or read it. SS
Don't laugh at the back / no laughing at the back. Fairly frequently used in the UK as an ironic expression when you're pretending that you'll be offended if people giggle at you. It's the back of the room option, Smokey - the expression probably comes from the schoolrooms of yesteryear, where teachers who ruled with a rod of iron would snap such phrases at a class, but in deadly seriousness.