"On this island," she went on, "as you will have begun to notice, no one ever speaks plainly. Whether it's Cockney rhyming codes or the crosswords in the newspapers - all English, spoken or written, is looked down on as no more than strings of text cleverly encrypted. Nothing beyond. Any who may come to feel betrayed by them, insulted, even hurt, even grievously, are simply 'taking it too seriously'. The English exercise their eyebrows and smile and tell you it's an 'irony' or 'a bit of fun', for it's only combinations of letters after all, isn't it.
Thomas Pynchon, "Against the Day", 2006.