Sunday, 13 May 2012

Verbal Ping Pong

‘Table Tennis set’ – ‘Table set for dinner’
‘Table for two’ – ‘Cook-up a winner’
‘Grease the wok’ – ‘Grip the bat’
‘Beat and oeuf’ - ‘Slice the ball’
‘Serve’ – ‘Sieve’
‘Net’ – ‘Net-call’
‘Turn up the heat on the hob’ – ‘Prepare to lob’
‘Antispin’ – ‘Antipasto’
‘Flip shot’ – ‘Omelette’
‘Play a ‘let’’ – Unreturned service…  
‘Steam ahead’ – ‘Roast’
‘Toast’ – ‘Tan’
‘Scoring – Scorching’ –
‘Use the bat as a fan’ – Unreturned service…
‘Play the table’ – ‘Lay the table’
‘Warm-up’ – ‘Steam-ahead’
‘Outplay’ – ‘Overcook’
‘Keep your eye on the ball’ – ‘Not the cookery book’
Ooh… the oeuf-ball’s sliced - Is slit… has died.
‘Ping pong’s a game’ – ‘Better fried’.
‘Table Tennis table?’ ‘More like a kitchen-table’. ‘More like a cooker hob’. ‘The tables, they’re tanned’. ‘Tanning tables?’ ‘Yes, the tables have been turned.’
Such situations are often characterized by verbal “ping pong” between those making an observation and those reacting to the observation. I call this “verbal ping pong”, as it seems that participants are simply hitting images back and forth over the net, as if they can score points on an opponent: the art of exchanging words, phrases, or insults back and forth between two people for an extended period of time. A playful, witty banter session giving each party a turn to in essence "drop the oeuf" when they run out of eyes, balls, or shots.

When you think about it you can be “tanned” on all three tables: by sparkling after-dinner conversation at the dinning table; as you slave over the cooker hob – what’s cooking if not tanning? and I’ve often been tanned, given a roasting, even, at ping pong. 

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