Richard Ord: Mintage, gay, ownage

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AS big a coup as it is for Sunderland, I wasn’t tempted to buy a ticket for the Kings of Leon concert at the Stadium of Light.

I suppose I’ve reached that age where I just don’t feel comfortable watching young men bellow “your sex is on fire” at the top of their lungs, let alone joining in with the chorus myself (billowing smoke, burning crotches, not a vision I want to conjure up over tea, but that’s the youth of today for you).

Attending a Stereophonics concert a couple of years ago I felt more like a headteacher at the school disco than a gig-goer.

I’ve declined the invitation of my wife to a number of gigs over the last few months because I don’t want to hear myself say “Do they have to play so loud?” while scrabbling to find a seat to rest my aching bones.

To be honest I’ve been looking forward to becoming a miserable old git. I’m just hoping all my years of practice pay off.

My kids already see me as an old codger. They laugh at what is known as my Swot Knot.

What’s a Swot Knot? I asked.

“God dad, don’t you know anything?” our Bradley, 10, sighed.

A Swot Knot is, in case you’re wondering, the knot used by most adults when tying their tie. We know it as Windsor Knot. It’s not cool.

To be down with the kids you have to wear your school tie in a loose knot the size of an adult fist (or bigger) with about an inch of tie left to protrude from underneath. I believe it is known as the Superfat knot.

It is, our Bradley informed me, “Mintage.”

As if to fast-track my progression from ordinary bloke to miserable old git, our Bradley and his pals have introduced new words to their vocabulary.

Mintage is something that is good, apparently.

As is “Ownage”.

Bradley’s nickname at school is Ownage Ordy.

And what’s Ownage?

“God dad, don’t you know anything?” he sighed, again.

Ownage, he went onto explain, is when you “own someone”. I was none the wiser.

“You know,” he said, “if say you nutmeg someone on a football pitch then you own them. Ownage!”

The three most common words I hear from our Bradley are Mintage, Ownage and Gay.

Anything that isn’t Mintage is Gay. And anyone who has been “owned” or wears a Swot Knot and isn’t what he would deem Mintage, is a Gayboy.

Watching him flick through the poster rack at Asda the other day was an eye-opener.

As he glanced at each poster passing his eyes (there were various boybands, pop stars, film stars and video game covers on display) he proffered a one word summary.

It went like this: “Gay, gay, gay, mint, gay, gay, mint, mint, gayboy, mint.”

My transition from ordinary bloke to grumpy old codger looks like it may be seamless.

- Any new words or expressions your kids have come up with? Send them to Richard at

The best will be reprinted in this column and then collected to form a Yoof Speak Dictionary for Befuddled Parents, out in the summer.

WHILE the Kings of Leon isn’t a draw, I am tempted to buy tickets just to be near support act Mona and the Walkmen.

Named after one of the band’s grandmothers, I was taken by the comments of Mona frontman and guitarist Nick Brown.

On revealing their big gig, Nick said: “Now we’re four horses pulling the carriage. It’s chemistry, man. It’s a marriage.”

Yeah man. And like, I’ll buy a ticket to get a front seat. From where I’ll throw something hard and heavy at them, man. Now that would be mintage.