Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Pancake Day

Today is Pancake Day. Shrove Tuesday.

We all like pancakes.
So why doesn't Pancake Day's arrival feature on telly any more?

Years ago, we used to get helpful adverts to remind us of the coming feast: 'Dont forget Jif Lemon Day'. The tart juice is squirted over the pancake; it counterpoints the piles of sugery gooh and provides one of your five-a-day. But this year, if I hadn't looked in my pocket diary (£2.99 from Poundland), I wouldn't have known the great celebration was upon us; w
hat a nice surprise to perk up an overcast day.

In olden times, as 'Christians' were about to enter into the mad self-denial of Lent they'd enjoy one last feast. Eggs, cream, sugar, butter, all slapped together in a calorie-busting, gluttonous mountain. By the time they'd recovered it was Ash Wednesday; forty days of fasting on dust and gravel until the joy of easter eggs.

Over the years, in the United States Pancake Day has evolved into Fat Tuesday. But in America, Fat Tuesday is followed by Even Fatter Wednesday, Obese Thursday and Lard-Arse Friday.

When I was young, growing up in Merrie England, the BBC's Blue Peter children's programme always made a big thing about Shrove Tuesday, and showed you how to cook the best pancakes in the land. I don't know if they still do; I haven't been able to watch it since vandals destroyed the Blue Peter garden and disturbed poor Petra's ashes.

Wednesday, 15 February 2012

Spot The Difference (8): Dobby vs Charles Windsor

Dobby the elf is a character from the 'Harry Potter' series of children's books. Looks a little worried and anxious, eh readers.

Perhaps Dobby has terrible secrets he's afraid will be found out. Is he feeling guilty over some past misdemeanor? Does he live in dread of exposure and retribution? Or maybe he's just a sponging ponce.

And - oh, look, it's Charles Windsor.

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Valentine's Day: Shop In The Name of Love

It's here. The first of the year's Megacorp manipulations, as we're induced to show love and affection for our partners by purchasing hopeless junk.
I love Valentine's Day, though I never get any cards. That's not important. It's the laughable rubbish touted in the name of VD, as I like to think of it, that I especially admire. On VD, if you don't shower the lodestar of your life with tat you're in deep trouble.

VD - To Do List
  • Petrol for shopping expedition
  • Bunch of flowers
  • Chocolates
  • Card with badge, song and arse-clenchingly embarrassing message
  • Useless doll, or four-foot tall toy animal in pink: lurid pig, Mr Hippo, perhaps a great big hephalump.
  • Book table for two (early-bird). Not Indian.

Or instead, maybe the thing to do is have a competition to see which of you can find the most pathetic or stupid VD gift. You'll still have to spend a bit of money on rubbish, but you'll have a great laugh presenting each other with the item you've chosen.
I guess it's important to get your other arf's agreement on this wheeze.