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Reader Letters

Get Your Whistles Correct

No big deal, but a Brit would never say “…spend the night with Brown’s flutes.” It would be “Brown’s whistles.” Whistles and flutes = suits, but the short version is whistles. In rhyming slang, every rule has an exception, but generally it’s the first word that’s the abbreviation.

This is the reason that my British husband falls about laughing when we drive past the restaurant “J. Arthur’s.” J. Arthur Bank = wank, you see.


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Rosecrans Baldwin co-founded TMN with publisher Andrew Womack in 1999. His latest book is Everything Now: Lessons From the City-State of Los Angeles. More information can be found at More by Rosecrans Baldwin

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