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Yorkshire Dialect: Ethel Fahnds t' Jooaker in t' Pack

A serious question is raised in Mike Shaw's latest dialect tale. "Why do you think the one-eyed chicken crossed the road?"

Yar Tom called ter see us last week wi' a couple of 'is grandchilder, Jamie an' John, who've booath just settled in at junior schooil. Ah must say they're a pair of braht little lads who sooan gave me ther order wen Ah asked 'em wat they wanted ter sup.

"Young uns aren't backward i' comin' forrard thees days, are they?" Ah sed ter Tom as Ah gate Jamie a glass o' orange an' John some dandelahn an' burdock.

Young Jamie thanked me fer 'is orange squash an' then, reight serious lahke, 'e sed 'e'd getten a question fer me.

"Go on then, let's be yerrin it," Ah sed. "Ah 'ope it's nooan too complicated cos Ah wer nivver a reight gooid scholar."

Jamie 'ad a swig of 'is pop an' sed,"Well, why do you think the one-eyed chicken crossed the road?"

"Oh, it's one o' them questions is it," Ah replahd. "Ah've nooan idea, sooa tha'll atta tell me."

"To get to the Bird's Eye shop, of course," quipped Jamie, grinnin' fra ear ter ear.

When we'd stopped laffin' John sed, 'e'd a question fer me an' awl, sooa we'd awl ter listen ter wat 'e 'ad ter say. "Why did the man with one hand cross the road?" 'e asked wi' a straight face.

Afooar Ah'd tahme ter think abaat it 'e blurted aat, "To go to the second hand shop."

"By gum, they're eveen brahter ner Ah thowt," Ah sed ter Tom. "Ah reckon they'd be awlreight on t' stage as a double act."

As Jamie gave me 'is empty glass 'e looked up an' asked me if Ah knew onny jooakes they could tell ter their mates.

"Nay, Ah can't say as Ah 'ave," Ah replahd. "Tha sees, Ah'm too busy dooin' awl t' jobs raand th' haas ter think up jooakes."

Yar Ethel set off laffin fit ter bust wen shoo yerd that. "Ah reckon that's t' best jooak o' t' lot," shoo telled t' lads. "Yer can tell yer mates 'e's sooa 'ard-warked 'at sometahmes 'e's a job ter lift a pahnt glass up ter 'is lips!"


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