Some of our HBC readers have commented that while HBC is extremely informative, it is a little on the overly serious academic side. They have suggested that readers contribute humorous captions for some of their favorite images. HBC admits to a lack of humor and is more than willing to provide a forum for readers that are amused or a least bemused by some of the historical images because the fashions--sometimes not even the older ones--now look out of date and funny to us.
A HBC contributor likes the idea of introducing humor although in his case (and that of other international readers), understanding British or American humor is difficult because English is not their native languaage. The mother tongue of many HBC readers is not English. Humor in many laguages (especially French and Spanish--English less so) is often a play on words. Indeed, HBC could not agree more. HBC would welcome humorous captions (or stories) in foreign languaages as long as an English translation is available. It doesn't have to be a perfect translation--I can deal with that--as long as the gist is there.
The basis language of HBC is of course English because most HBC contributors are American, English, and Australians. HBC is aware that many readers have accessed HBC using English as a second language. There are of course differences between American and British English, although we cam uually figure out the differences. (I was once told by a Pakistani Brit-Rail employee that I spoke very poor English.)
HBC's policy (although imperfectly implemented to date) is to seek internet English as a standard. Internet English is a form that all English speakers can understand, where ever they come from and whether they are native English speakers or speak language as a secondary language. References to proroquial, country specic matters are to be avoided. HBC readers are incourraged to inform HBC is they encounter sentences that thery can not understand. We will then work on those pages and provide any foreign langauge explanations provided.
Here are some of the HBC images for which readers have submitted humorous captions. Note that by clicking on the image you can go to the page where HBC discusses the image.
The first image was taken at an English public school sometime in the 1950s. Two boys, one in shorts, one apparently in a jumpsuit, work on an old car. Warning; bad humor ahead! The reader finds it amusing that even older senior secondary level boys wear short pants and kneesocks as part of their school uniform.
The boy in this Philadelphia portrait wears one of the more elaborate Little Lord Fauntleroy suits that HBC has seen. Note that betweeen the collar and cuffs--you can hardly see the boy's jacket. Understandably, modern boys find this boys elaborate suit, collar, bow, not to mention ringlet curls as a quite amazing outfit for a boy.
This photograph was taken at in the village near a British preparatory school. The village bridge is very chracteristic of northern England and Scotland. The boys here have probably just attended services in the village church and are on their way back to school. The formality of this school uniform combined
with wearing short pants and kneesocks will probably look funny to many modern boys.
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