Thousands Back Online Bingo Campaign
The Plain English Campaign is backing the fight by thousands of bingo fans to save the classic caller’s cry of two fat ladies – amid fears it could face the axe for being sexist.
[UKPRwire, Wed Dec 16 2009] The Plain English Campaign is backing the fight by thousands of bingo fans to save the classic caller’s cry of two fat ladies – amid fears it could face the axe for being sexist.
Almost 3,000 bingo lovers have already voted to protect the tradition in a poll at www.OnlineBingoClub.co.uk, launched by the site’s owner Rob Hutchison. Rob’s target is to rally 10,000 supporters online, and when he’s reached his goal, send a petition to the European Parliament.
Rob is calling on his 200,000 Online Bingo Club members to stand up for their favourite bingo terminology after hearing industry rumours that it’s only a matter of time before EU killjoys set their sights on bingo hall banter.
His move follows recent news that European quangos have ordered a purge of everyday ‘gendered’ terminology, including ‘right hand man,’ ‘Old Masters’ and ‘gentlemen’s agreement.’
The number ‘88’ earned the nickname because it looks like two plump women standing side by side. Rob fears other bingo terms could also come under threat with terms such as legs eleven coming under fire for being sexist.
The Plain English Campaign represents a significant boost to Rob’s cause. With 12,000 members in 80 countries, it battles for clear communication in everyday life.
Chrissie Maher, OBE and founder of Plain English Campaign said: “Our language is a reflection of our society and people will always create slang terms. But familiar phrases that carry no ill-intentions are usually accepted by most people using PC - meaning plain commonsense! It shouldn’t be necessary to mess about with parts of our heritage like our nursery rhymes or bingo slang if the meaning is clear and understood first time round. We can’t let political correctness rule our language.”
Rob said he was delighted to have won the backing from the organisation.
“The call of ‘two fat ladies’ in bingo is part of our vernacular and our heritage,” he said. “It’s worth sticking up for, before we get some diktat from Brussels saying it’s derogatory to overweight customers. At the end of the day, fat is fat. We’re living in a PC world these days, and I don’t mean the computer store.”
He added: “I’m sure any ladies of larger size who go to bingo don’t find it insulting, but take it in the affectionate spirit in which it’s meant. What’s the alternative: ’two generously proportioned people of either gender?’ It’s not very snappy. So this is a pre-emptive strike. Hopefully, if the forces of PC descend on our bingo halls, we’ll be able to say that the number in favour is far greater than the number complaining, and we have the votes to prove it.”
If any complaints are upheld, other calls could come under fire. Potentially also risque are 33 – Dirty Knees (sexual connotations) Legs 11 (encourages men to wolf whistle) and 80 – Gandhi’s Breakfast, which was named after an imaginary aerial view of Gandhi, sitting with legs crossed, in front of an empty plate: disrespectful to those going hungry in the developing world.
If you’d like to protect ‘two fat ladies’ from extinction, please register your support in the poll at www.OnlineBingoClub.co.uk.
More/Images: Steve McComish
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