An English teacher has warned visitors from the US about the three words to never say to a British person to avoid embarrassment when visiting the UK.
Ash, from the UK, teaches British culture on TikTok – regularly advising non-Brits of various lighthearted social norms and ideologies.
In the post, titled: ‘Don’t say these three words in the UK,’ he explained the meanings behind the words – fanny, soccer and bangs – and said why they mean very different things in the US and other English-speaking countries.
The video quickly racked up thousands of views, with many agreeing with Ash, while others took the advice as a golden opportunity to ‘annoy’ their English friends in deliberately misusing the words.
‘Here are three words you should probably avoid using in the UK,’ he explained.
An English teacher, named Ash, has warned people who live outside of the UK of three words that may confuse a British person if used in a particular context
‘The first is “fanny”. Americans might call a bag around your waist a fanny pack.’
Explaining the rather more awkward British connotations of the word, Ash added: ‘However, in the UK, a fanny is a lady’s private parts.’
He then highlighted a particular pet peeve, among British football fans especially, as he introduced the second word, announcing: ‘Number two: it’s “soccer”.
‘I can’t think of another word that British people hate more than the word soccer.
‘Not only did we invent the sport, but hearing it being called another name – other than the one that we use – it makes a lot of people very mad.’
Ash added: ‘Just be careful about calling football soccer – side note: I don’t really care that much, but, some people do.’
The teacher presented the final word that could confuse people if used in the UK, saying: ‘The third word is “bangs.”
‘We don’t use the word “bangs” to describe hair in front of your forehead – we call it a “fringe”.’
Ash explained the British meaning behind the following words: fanny, soccer and bangs – which he says may annoy, confuse or make a British person feel awkward if used out of context
He continued: ‘It’s a fringe, not bangs. If you’d said to someone, “I’m getting my bangs done”, they’d be very confused.’
Concluding the video, the teacher said: ‘So those were three more words you shouldn’t use in the UK.’
One person from Trinidad agreed with Ash, writing: ‘I’m from Trinidad & I agree with the soccer one… it’s football!’
Another TikTok user, a Brit living in South Africa, spoke of her awkward experiences in using one of the words, writing: ‘Do you know how many times my family has used “fringe” in South Africa and every time I ask the hairdresser for it she’s confused.’
One British person agreed with Ash’s terminology breakdown, commenting: ‘As a British man I can confirm.’
Another user, whose location was not mentioned, wrote: ‘My husband ran into an awkward situation when he was looking for “suspenders” in the UK as opposed to braces.’
Hundreds of British and international TikTok users commented – many agreed with Ash while others revealed their intention to use the advice to deliberately ‘annoy’ their English friends
Some Australians, however, unapologetically pointed out how the word ‘soccer’ may offend visiting Brits visiting because it is a part of their own football culture.
One said: ‘Australian here – sorry (not sorry) we offend by calling it soccer because our National Aussie Rules game is footy & we are proud of that. ‘
One crudely creative commenter poked some fun and devised a triggering sentence out of the three words, writing: ‘I watched a soccer game after getting my bangs cut and shopping for a new fanny.’
Some users even stated their intentions to annoy their British friends by deliberately misusing the words, with one saying: ‘I’m going to anger my British friends now. Thank you.’
Another person said: ‘Next time I go, I’m saying all of these to random people.’