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Defining “rare”

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This is a branch of an estate agency in Gosforth which specialises in “rare” properties, in the sense of properties that are in someway unusual and hence infrequently available on the property market. Wendy, as someone from Northern Ireland, finds the name particularly amusing, as the word “rare” has negative colloquial connotations in Northern Ireland: somebody dressed in an unusual and inappropriate way, for example, might be described as looking a bit “rare”.

You may think that this long-winded explanation removes any scintilla of humour that might exist about an agency advertising itself as listing only unpleasant properties, but I’m sure we’ll continue to smile as we walk past. And maybe, occasionally, we might continue to tease one another with the line: “That’s the shop where I found you!”

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