HERE’S a wee yarn about an Alliance councillor from a certain part of Northern Ireland who once used an Ulster-Scots word – the horror.
But it really was quite accidental that he did so, and his intentions were quite honourable.
It was during the COVID 19 lockdown and he wished to advise people not to be a hallion and to stay within the rules.
When questioned about this word, as well as he might, he suggested it had a Gaelic origin, with a pleasant emoticon smile.
A correcting bodie joined the thread and saying it was Scottish/English, with links to prove it.
Soon a further bodie suggested it might indeed have some Gaelic connection, back in the mists of time, Scottish and Ulster only, but really it was hard to be conclusive.
So civilised, the term Ulster-Scots wasn’t used once, so there were no Ballymena men with cans of harp; no ‘dialect not a language’ slabberers.
There were no sectarian over tones and all was well with the world.