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How's the crack?

(9 Posts)
tartanbuggy Sat 26-Mar-11 14:09:03

Hello! Wonder if anybody could help me with an essay I'm doing for an OU module? I'm looking into the word "crack", as in "How's the crack?" or "Jimmy's good crack". I spent my childhood (1970's) in the Black Isle/Dingwall and also lived in Morayshire and Aberdeen for a while in the 1980's and I remember the word being used in the first example to mean something like "How's it going?" or "What's happening?" and in the second instance to mean something like "Jimmy's good fun and a lively conversationalist". Does anybody else remember using "crack" in that way and is it still used today? I imagine it's a little like the Irish "craic", but don't know how it is spelled in Scotland. Unfortunately, "crack" now has other connotations!

I've lived in other parts of Scotland - Argyll, Glasgow, Jura - and don't remember "crack" being used in that way there. I was just wondering if it was mainly a North East Scotland usage.

I now live in the far South of England and don't really have any contacts left in the North who I could ask, so I'd be very interested to hear any thoughts that anybody might have.

kangers Sun 27-Mar-11 09:29:23

'What's the crack' common around here (sheffield) and as you say it means- 'what's going on', 'what's the story'. Very common here.

kangers Sun 27-Mar-11 09:29:44

'What's the crack' common around here (sheffield) and as you say it means- 'what's going on', 'what's the story'. Very common here.

tartanbuggy Sun 27-Mar-11 20:06:36

Thanks Kangers, that's interesting. It seems that it's more widespread than I thought at first. I just asked a friend who is Portsmouth born and bred if she had ever heard the expression and she confirmed that she had been using it since she was a child. She's in her 40s, but funnily enough when I asked local teenagers (mine included) if they'd ever heard "what's the crack", they just sniggered. Hmmmmm!

VJayJay Wed 30-Mar-11 21:07:14

I moved up to the Highlands 5 years ago from England and this was the first time I heard the word crack as you desribed it. I was at my new job and someone said 'they're a great crack, the staff working here'. I was a bit confused at first grin

tartanbuggy Thu 31-Mar-11 10:46:05

What part of England did you move from VJay? I suppose "crack" must seem extremely odd if you haven't heard it used like that before grin. I used to confuse people when I moved to England and talked about "getting the messages". One colleague thought I was going to collect a load of post-it notes.

VJayJay Thu 31-Mar-11 13:39:29

I moved from Cheshire smile. I still get confused over some sayings grin

missjulie Fri 01-Apr-11 22:25:30

I am a born a bread Black Isler grin, and we say "what's the craic?" all the time! We spell it 'craic'.

washnomore Fri 01-Apr-11 22:34:39

I'm from Moray and we use it all the time, agree with missjulie on the spelling. We might "have good craic", go somewhere "just for the craic" or ask "is there any craic?". Great word - had never thought about it not being in universal use! Is there an English equivalent?

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