I’ve been at this too long. That, anyway, was my reaction when I read the following in yesterday’s New York Times Magazine profile of Jimmy Wales, the founder of Wikipedia, an American who now lives in London:
He uses Britishisms that make him sound a little like the famous faux-Brits Gwyneth Paltrow or Madonna. He told me he had “a good ol’ time” at the Olympics, where he attended beach volleyball and an equestrian event as Boris Johnson’s guest. Living in Marylebone is nice, he says, because “we have loads of friends and people pop by.” Unlike in the United States, where politicians are remote Wikipedia subjects, in Britain he “literally” (pronounced LIT-ruh-lee) knows them.
The passage left me dazed and confused. Is “good ol’ time” a Britishism? Is “pop by”? (Or is the author referring to “loads”?) And what about that pronunciation of “literally”? I associate it with Rob Lowe’s character on “Parks and Recreation,” who is certainly not a Brit, even a faux one.
I wish I could look all that up on Wikipedia, but even that remarkable resource is no help here. So I’ll crowd-source it to you lot. Help?