The British Tag

unionflagI recently read this post on Becster’s blog and immediately wanted to join in with the tag as well. Because I’m British and it looked like fun, ok? The idea is really simple… all I have to do is answer the questions.

Question 1: How many cups of tea do you have a day and how many sugars in your tea?
It depends, but usually at least three. One when I get up (which my boyfriend makes me), one when I start working and one in the afternoon. Sometimes I’ll have an extra one in the morning, or if I don’t go out at lunch time I’ll have one then and another after work, so it can be up to six. Milk, no sugar please. And the tea needs to be strong – builder’s tea all the way!

Question 2: Favourite part of your roast?
Potatoes! I can never decide whether I like roasties or mash better though. And if there are Yorkshire Puddings then those too. But right now any part of a roast would be my favourite because I just want a real British roast dinner without having to cook it myself. I miss British pubs!

Question 3: Favourite dunking biscuit?
I don’t dunk biscuits in my tea because the idea of soggy biscuits makes me shudder. But biscuits for eating with tea have to be Bourbon Creams. I’ll also take Chocolate Hobnobs if you’re offering though.

Question 4: Favourite quintessentially British past time?
Afternoon tea! So many Germans are convinced we Brits partake in tea and scones every day at 5 p.m. I wish we did!

TeaQuestion 5: Favourite word?
Canny. Not the standard English version (which means shrewd), but northern usage which can mean anything. She’s a canny lass = she’s a nice girl, it’s canny caad = it’s quite cold, gan canny (to someone who’s about to drive home) = drive carefully or more generally just take care, gan canny wi’ the vodka = be careful with it, use/drink it sparingly (i.e. don’t get too drunk). How can you not love such a versatile word?

Question 6: Cockney rhyming slang?
I don’t know much (even though we learned about it in school once), but I did teach the boyfriend what barnet (as in barnet fair) means. Oh, and my dad’s always saying “Giz a butcher’s” – as in butcher’s hook = look.

Question 7: Favourite sweet?
Milk bottles! Yes, I may actually be 5. I also love chocolate limes though and have bought them back from the UK with me numerous times.

Question 8: What would your pub be called?
Probably something boring like “The Red Lion” because I have no imagination! Oh, I know, The Beehive because Bee is one of my nicknames and I would get to decorate using a bee theme.

Question 9: No 1 British person?
Eddie Izzard! I love him so much. Or Alan Shearer because he’s a Geordie hero and we share a birthday. (I did also like Becster’s answer of Alan Rickmann though).

Question 10: Favourite shop/restaurant?
In Britain? That’s actually really hard seeing as I don’t live there any more. I think I’d have to go with Barter Books in Alnwick though.

Question 11: What British song pops into your head?
In Your World by Muse, mostly because they’re performing at a festival in Switzerland this summer and I was looking up prices yesterday so they’ve been on my mind anyway.

Question 12: Marmite – love it or hate it?
Ugh, hate it! I used to have a housemate who loved it and I would have to leave the room when she spread it on her toast because I couldn’t even stand the smell of the stuff!

Have you done this tag? I would love to see your answers!

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Stamp of Approval Saturday: Maps, books, badgers and a blog analyser

I’m linking up with Alex at Ifs, Ands & Butts again for Stamp of Approval Saturday. Here are the Internet finds that have caught my eye recently:

1. My first link comes from Alex herself – she posted it on Stamp of Approval Saturday last week and I had to post it here for those of you who don’t read her blog (although you really should) to check out. This list of maps that will help you make sense of the world from Twisted Sifter is just ace!!

2. Next up, Buzzfeed: I felt like a nodding dog reading this list of problems only book lovers will understand. So true, all of it! And there is definitely no such thing as too many books!

Badger
Archaeologist? (Photo credit: Tatterdemalion!)

3. This next link would have been included on last week’s Stamp of Approval Saturday if I hadn’t been way too busy to post. There’s something about a badger discovering a medieval tomb that appeals to me. Who needs archaeologists anyway? 😀

4. Another Buzzfeed. This one’s about brilliant British people problems and it’s so true!! I have definitely done 16 and 18…

5. Finally, here’s a link that a friend shared with me this week. UrlAi is basically a site that analyses blogs. You put in a URL and it tells you whether it thinks a male or female wrote it, how happy the author is and other things. Here’s what it says about me:

confuzzledom.wordpress.com is probably written by a female somewhere between 18-25 years old. The writing style is personal and happy most of the time.

I was going to give you a screenshot of the little graphs it came up with for my blog, but for some reason my computer was unable to take one (“Unable to capture screenshot. All possible  methods failed”), which is kind of a shame, because the visualisation thing that shows you which words went into which category is pretty interesting. Here’s a small excerpt from mine:

♣ The words “ribbon”, “cupcake” and “feet” were in the female category, while the male category had “assistant”, “astride” and “casinos”. (Astride also came up under “business”… which made me laugh. Am I the only one whose mind instantly goes to the gutter on hearing the word “astride” without any context?)
♣”Hate”, “trouble” and “scary” made sense for the upset category, but I’m not sure why “air” ends up there?! Meanwhile “excited”, “lovely” and “birthday” put me firmly in the happy category… but so did “ice”. What?!

Anyway, you should check the site out and see what it has to say about your blog.

Found anything interesting on the Internet this lately? You too can link up with Alex for Stamp of Approval Saturday and share your finds with the rest of the blogosphere! This week’s edition is the last one, so get in while you can.

Stamp of Approval Saturday: So Very British

love great britain
love great britain (Photo credit: thecloudberry)

For this week’s Stamp of Approval Saturday, I want to share with you this Buzzfeed that my colleague sent to me:

30 Very British Problems

Number 1 is my sister all over!!
Also, numbers 3, 11, 13 and 25 are so, so true.

Also, I discovered there’s an entire site dedicated to people sending in photos of themselves wearing a creepy horse head mask. Whaaaat? And we thought our Charlie idea was clever…

CreepyHorseMask.com

Never mind, Charlie Horse, you’re still our favourite!

Charlie meeting someone special in Connemara National Park
Charlie meeting someone special in Connemara National Park

What Internet finds get your stamp of approval this week? Head on over to Ifs, Ands and Butts to link up!

It’s British week at Aldi Süd!

"British Isles" week (photo © Aldi Süd)
“British Isles” week (photo © Aldi Süd)

Recently, The Diary of Sugar and Spice had a post about American week at Aldi Süd (there are two versions of Aldi here in Germany – Süd (South) and Nord (North). The one in the UK is Süd). It was quite interesting to read an American perspective on what the Germans consider to be “American” food. If you believe Aldi Süd, they’re obsessed with cranberries and blueberries, and most of what they eat is incredibly unhealthy.

Then, yesterday, one of my colleagues sent me this link:
https://www.aldi-sued.de/de/angebote/angebote-ab-donnerstag-4-juli/

The follow up to American week at Aldi Süd is British week. Of course… what else could it be? So, for those Brits who are curious about how Germany views our eating habits, here’s what’s available on British week… (Note: They’re actually referring to the promotion as “A Taste of the British Isles, hence why Irish stuff is also available).

Fish and Chips

Photo © Aldi Süd
Photo © Aldi Süd

It’s true, we do like our fish and chips. But they don’t usually come premixed in a single bag. And what even is that fish? It looks like a larger, flatter version of fishfingers… Also, where are the mushy peas? Now those are authentically British!

Buck’s Fizz

Photo © Aldi Süd
Photo © Aldi Süd

This one mostly made me laugh becasue I had no idea anyone still drank Buck’s Fizz. Does anyone still drink it? I remember being allowed a very small glass of this stuff with my Christmas dinner when I was about 10 and feeling incredibly grown up for the rest of the day…

Irish Lamb

Photo © Aldi Süd
Photo © Aldi Süd

This one I will give them because we do like our lamb over on the British Isles. Buuut… where is the mint sauce? I didn’t say any of that in the shop. You can’t have one without the other! Get it sorted, Aldi Süd…
I did not buy any lamb… not due to the lack of mint sauce, but because my Aldi didn’t have any!

Baked Beans

Photo © Aldi Süd
Photo © Aldi Süd

Oh yes, these are definitely 100% British! It is possible to get Baked Beans in Germany at any time (although not at Aldi), but usually for over a euro per tin. Aldi were selling them for only 45 cents! Yes, I definitely stocked up…

To see all the foods from the British Isles that were on offer, click on the link above. Other items from the selection included Irish whiskey, Wine Gums, Scottish Shortbread Fingers, various jams (including blackcurrant preserve. Yum yum!) and, of course, tea (including one called “Five O’clock Tea”. *Snort*).

And the foods that they were missing, in my humble opinion? Malt vinegar, Cheddar cheese, sausage rolls, back bacon, gravy granules and crumpets. Especially crumpets!!

Fridaaaay! (letters)

It’s Friday again (hurray!!), and we all know what that means…

snail mailDear rain. Apart from last Saturday, I can’t remember the last time you stayed away for more than a few hours. Enough is enough, ok? Go to the Sahara or something… they could probably use you there!

Dear sore throat. And you can go away as well! I have better things to do than be ill.

Dear Ireland. See you in two weeks!

Dear work. This weeks translations have been challenging to say the least! Some slightly nicer texts next week would be a good way to finish off the month!

Dear tea. I am British, therefore I always love you, but this week you have truly been my saviour. Keep on being awesome!

Dear readers. I’m nearly finished with the cross stitch that’s been keeping me from you, so hopefully I’ll be able to return to more regular blogging next week. In the meantime, have a fabulous weekend!
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The month of tea and soup

I read recently that January is apparantly National Hot Tea Month. I’m assuming the “National” here must refer to America – I’ve certainly never heard of it! Mind you, being British I have no need for a tea month. A nice cup of tea, according to we Brits, is the answer to everything, therefore every month is tea month!

January is also supposedly National Soup Month. Again, I can only assume the nation in question is America. I think this is one I could get on board with though. What could be better to counteract the awfulness of January than some nice hot soup? (I know it’s an utter cliché, but I think January is my least favourite month of the year, closely followed by November.)

World soup month is the way forward, I feel. Admittedly it’s not exactly soup weather in Australia and New Zealand, but there’s always Gazpacho and… other cold soups. I’m sure there must be some.

Homemade soup!
Homemade soup!

Since tonight, for me, is quiz night (the first one of the year!) here are some random facts about January for you:

questionmarks
Question marks (Photo credit: makeitgreat)
  1. The birthstone for January is garnet.
  2. 8 January is the birth date of Elvis Presley, Dame Shirley Bassey (a Welsh singer) and David Bowie.
  3. The United Kingdom claimed sovereignty over the Falkland Islands on 1 January 1833.
  4. January is named after the Roman God Janus, God of beginnings and transitions
  5. Traditionally, the Roman calendar consisted of 10 months totalling 304 days, with winter as a “monthless” period. January and February were only added in around 713 BC, which explains the seeming weirdness of October, November and December – which mean eight, nine and ten respectively, despite, in fact, being the tenth, eleventh and twelfth months!
  6. The London Underground, the world’s oldest underground railway, opened in 10 January 1863. That means the oldest section, which went from Paddington Station to Farringdon Street via King’s Cross and is now incorporated into the Circle, Hammersmith & City and Metropolitan lines, will be celebrating 150 years this year!