In Candidate Class, one of the things that is tested for your Unit 2 is your ability to brief the dances before performing them. However, these briefs must be manual-perfect, which means there's quite a few SCD colloquialisms that have dropped from my vocabulary lately, lest I become too comfortable with them and forget myself during the exam.
(As an aside, I actually had an interesting discussion with Jeanetta McColl about this, due to my originally putting "widdershins" into my exam lesson plan. Her reasoning, which is very sound, is that due to the truly international nature of Scottish Country Dancing, having standardized language that is used and shared by everyone across the world is much easier than hoping people will understand your alternate terminology.)
The classic example is "Hello-Goodbye Setting", which in official parlance is better known as "Set to Corners and Partner1", but even something as mundane as "corner-partner-corner-partner" has a more official briefing as "turn corners and partner". There's a lovely woman who runs the Salem class who you can make scream if you call right hands across at the top and bottom "teapots", and quite a lot of contra dancers who will understand what you mean perfectly well if you call them "stars", but neither term is remotely correct. And of course, we never do a double anything, we do the thing twice.
(Which is honestly the biggest shame --the rest of that is fiddly, but "double crossover mirror reels" is dead simple to say, and evocative in a way "1s dance reels first with opposite sides then with own sides, crossing down between the 2s and 3s to begin" just isn't.)
Of course, all eyes are going to be on me2 for the next few years as I find my footing as a teacher and start my unit 4 portfolio3, so we'll see whether I can actually loosen up my tongue. And who knows? If I'm ever calling a dance in South Africa, I'll be quite glad I've the experience of being able to brief something everyone would understand.
1: Not set to corners and partnerS, as I continually flubbed. There's definitely a polyamory joke in here somewhere...
2: Not actually true, I don't think, but our tutors liked to emphasize the fact that as new teachers, everyone would be looking to us as role models.
3: Assuming I passed my units 2 and 3, oh gods, the waiting!