Sunday, 24 April 2011

"Get your eyes chalked, ref!"

When I was a lad watching the village team (Kirklington Hill Home Guards FC) with other lads we used to shout at the referee, following the example of the adults also watching. No doubt following the custom of ages. (I wonder if the spectators shouted abuse at the referee (even if he was the Lord of the Manor) at the archery contests held in the Middle Ages)

I have to say though that our phrase was more a ritual than a phrase of abuse.

When the referee blew his whistle to award a free kick to the opposing team the phrase that I shouted and until recenty I believed that everyone else shouted was

"Get your eyes chalked, ref!" 

But it makes no kind of sense! Perhaps the adults were shouting CHECKED, not CHALKED. We were declaring that the referee had made a bad decision because he did not have good eyesight.

"Get your eyes checked, ref!" does make sense.

 But before I confess to having made an idiotic error all those years ago I would like to be sure that I had picked up the wrong word.

Does anyone recall shouting such a phrase? With CHALKED  or CHECKED?

The end

June, 2014

My own idea is that chalk may have been used to write symbols on a wall for people to check how well they could see in the days before the printed alphabetical wall chart. Maybe I was correct in shouting CHALKED.

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