Recent reflections

No mirror required…

Over the long weekend, as I attempted unsuccessfully to remain dry, I saw several things that gave me pause.

As I walked down Piccadilly, I passed a branch of the sandwich shop chain that wishes to suggest, to any Francophone customers, that its wares are ready to eat (another similar chain dispenses with the foreign tongue and indeed the “ready to” leaving only the bald imperative).  This chain is also justly famed for its attempt to eliminate the EU mayonnaise lake single-handed.  Anyway, as I passed I noticed a sign on the pavement outside asking us to “Keep it clean for the Queen”. Now I know this country’s finances are not the Mae West, but surely Her Majesty has not been reduced to crossing Green Park in her slippers and purchasing a mayo-heavy sandwich when she’s feeling a little peckish? I’m all for cost cutting, but she is 86 – surely she must qualify for meals on wheels (or its modern equivalent)?

Walking through John Lewis on my way to the flicks (of which perhaps more in another post) to avoid the rain, I passed through the kitchenware department. There I spotted a range of saucepans which were copper on the outside, stainless steel on the inside and aluminium in the middle. The pans did not appear to be particularly thick sided, so each layer must have been quite thin. I suspect that this was very much a range to be seen, not hidden away in a cupboard – and one which I presume would need frequent polishing. However, my worry – or perhaps my interest – was how this trinity of metals, with different rates of expansion under heat, would stay together in the rough-and-tumble of life on the range (I’m assuming they were for the Aga-using public). I could easily see a very messy divorce on the horizon, with each pan slowly becoming three pans of very similar sizes. How would you stick three metals together in this way and keep them together? Perhaps my next OU course needs to be on metallurgy or materials science?

Wandering round the fruit and veg section of Waitrose, I added another item to the list of tasks to be performed when my merits are finally recognised and I rise to power in this land (don’t worry, I will be a benevolent ruler).  Buy-one-get-one-free offers will be banned on any item where the ‘best before’ (or ‘use by’ or similar) date is less than twelve months from today (I might be willing to negotiate the twelve down a little).  This is just encouraging people to buy more perishable goods than they require, leading to wastage.  I refuse to buy such offers, but as a result feel that I am being forced to subsidise other people’s waste. Of such little things is resentment built…

Finally, I should perhaps warn you that WordPress has changed the GUI (Graphical User Interface: yes I admit it, I am a graphical user) it presents me with as I craft these posts, hewing them from the raw stuff of language.  No longer does it offer a word count, so posts may start growing longer without the constraining effect of constant feedback on my text-based verbosity.


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