Dutch phrases | Puppy adoption | Do-gooders | MP pay increases | Staycations
As a Dutch reader living in the UK, I was pleased to see John Crace (Digested week, 9 October) refer to the Dutch “activity” of niksen, ie, of “doing nothing”. He appears to refer to this as an art form contributing to happiness. However, in common parlance it will be used as follows: de hele dag lopen niksen or de hele dag zitten niksen, which mean “walking about all day doing sod all” and “sitting around all day doing sod all”. Both are derogatory comments. This interpretation is more in keeping with the Dutch work ethic.
Wico van Mourik
Gainford, County Durham
• There are hundreds of dogs in shelters deserving a home so the best advice about buying a puppy is don’t shop, adopt (Puppy power: the costs and pitfalls of buying a dog, 10 October).
‘Do-gooder’ attacks seem like bad faith | Brief letters