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Herne Bay on the Rain Scale

The wags over at BBC Radio 4 invited their listeners to invent a new word-scale to describe British rain – like the Beaufort scale for wind, but funnier. I’m delighted to see that it takes the very heaviest kind of rain “siling down” to drive people from Herne Bay’s beaches… Praise indeed!


Your words for rain

1. Not Raining

Outdoor furniture is erected cautiously in gardens and on balconies. Light to moderate rummaging takes places in rucksacks for cagoules and pac-a-macs.

2. Mizzling

Women on way to hairdressing appointments proceed apprehensively without umbrellas.

3. Grizzerable

Overseas players on county cricket teams are surprised to discover that they’re required to continue playing.

4. Woodfiddly Rain

Outdoor furniture is brought back indoors. Lips are pursed.

5. Mawky

Aggressive hawkers selling fold-up umbrellas appear outside railway stations and shopping centres. Women on way back from hairdressers form impatient queue.

6. Tippling Down

Garden furniture is returned to garden centres in hope of getting money back.

7. Luttering Down

Fingers drummed on indoor furniture. Eyes rolled. Tuts tutted

8. Plothering Down

Irritating displays of supposedly barbecue-friendly foods are removed from the entrance areas of supermarkets.

9. Pishpotikle Weather

Rain intensifies.Women with newly done hair find aggressive hawkers have disappeared when they take defective umbrellas back in search of a refund.

10. Raining Like a Cow Relieving Itself

Cows relieve themselves.

11. Raining Stair-rods

Any garden furniture not taken indoors floats away. Reporters on 24-hour news channels began using words torrential and holding their hands out with their palms upturned.

12. Siling Down

Hardy British holidaymakers are finally driven from beach at Herne Bay. Garden furniture begins appearing on eBay. Water companies introduce hosepipe bans, pointing to dry spell five years ago.

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