• Richard Farr

Oh … poo(p).

As a British writer who has lived in the US for 35 years, I constantly face the problem that I cannot remember which of my Englishes is which. Compounding the problem is that fact that the transatlantic trade in meaning and use, going on for centuries,* is if anything accelerating.

* (Favorite example: Brits think “gotten” is a colonial corruption of the correct “got.” In fact, it’s C.18th British English that died out at home and was preserved by emigrants.)

Now I’m writing a comic manuscript that involves frogs appalling the citizenry by showing up in large numbers and poo-ing on everything. Or pooping?

I thought from my own experience that poo-ing was British and pooping American. And then I thought: perhaps pooping, like celebrating Halloween, is now British too. But it turns out, among many other complications, that poo-ing may be a recent import anyway. See this interesting thread at the blog Separated by a Common Language:


Now I don’t know which to use.

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