Sunday, 13 October 2013

I'm archaic...

I went in the Post Office this week for a few stamps.  I wanted twenty 1p stamps and twenty 2p stamps. 
Unfortunately the young lady behind the counter and I came across a communication gap when I asked for “Twenty one p stamps and twenty tuppenny ones, please”.
“Sorry?  Tuppeny?  What’s that?  You’ll have to translate!” she said.
“Tuppence.  Two pence.  Two p.”
So when did ‘tuppence’ and ‘tuppenny’ disappear from the English language? And I conclude they have because my Spillchucker doesn’t recognise them as English.  It’s sad when you find you are old enough to be using archaic English…

Who remembers Pink Pills?

I remember Mum talking about “Pink Pills for Pale People”.   Englishman Dr Williams’ (1850-1920)  ‘Pink Pills’ were advertised as an iron rich tonic for the blood and nerves to treat anaemia, clinical depression, poor appetite and lack of energy.  I’m not sure about some of the symptoms but lack of energy is something for which I need the odd pink pill.

Alternatively I could use Davis & Kidder’s Patent Magneto Electric Machine For Nervous Diseases.  A great piece of 19th-century medical quackery that consisted of a brass mechanism that is cranked so that a static charge is built up and delivered through the two handles that the afflicted person is supposed to hold or apply to themselves.  Ouch.

Giant Squid

A 30 foot long Giant Squid in good condition was found by beachgoers in Spain last week.  Read more about it here. The deep-sea denizen—the fabled and mysterious Architeuthis dux - weighed nearly 400 pounds.  

It was delivered to the Maritime Museum of Cantabria, where it was cleaned and frozen, while a decision is awaited between museum scientists and the government as to what will be done with the colossal cephalopod.  They must have a fairly big freezer.  I bet they could get a lot of fish fingers in it.

Political hot wind…

Here is the actual quote:- "Wind is God’s way of balancing heat. Wind is the way you shift heat from areas where it’s hotter to areas where it’s cooler. That’s what wind is. Wouldn’t it be ironic if in the interest of global warming we mandated massive switches to energy, which is a finite resource, which slows the winds down, which causes the temperature to go up? Now, I’m not saying that’s going to happen, Mr. Chairman, but that is definitely something on the massive scale. I mean, it does make some sense. You stop something, you can’t transfer that heat, and the heat goes up. It’s just something to think about."

Packing my suitcase
Partner-who-loves-tea and I are off down South on Tuesday.  We are going down by a route we haven’t used before and taking a couple of days en route to Daughter-who-takes-photos and then another couple of days coming back.   It will be a well-earned break for PWLT after her moving offices and also holding a Residential for one of her student courses this weekend.  Although she will be doing all the driving I hope the gentle trip down and back will allow her to relax a bit.  So you may see us walking hand-in-hand through Tewkesbury and Glastonbury this week.

Getting her own back... 


  1. A great post. I can't even get suprise past spill chucker.
    As hot air rises surface winds logically will blow from cool to hot areas..Who am I to gainsay a Texan and a Republican Texan. If he looks half witted and talks like a half wit then I'm safe in assuming he is a half wit.

  2. Some old time home remedies really work, but the patent medicines were patently false advertising.

    Love those two signs, except that i have to hold my Sweetie's (husband's) hand to make sure he doesn't shop. He is the spender in the family, it's hard to drag me to a shopping mall.

    Enjoy your little get-away trip!

  3. I remember learning about "tuppence" and "ha'penny" etc when I stared learning English in school. First time I visited England was in 1969, when you still had the old currency (quite a headache for us who were used to the decimal system from our own currency). Next time we went back (1971) I think you had switched to the New Pence and called them "p"...

  4. A great post. Two quick things: with a legislator (?) like Rep. J. Barton, Republican of Texas, this country will NEVER run out of hot air.

    Also wanted to share a posting a friend shared:

    Two arrows, marked as follows:
    Men, to the left; Women to the right -- because women are always right!
    Sorry, couldn't resist.

    Have a great vacation! xoxoxo

  5. The last quote about wives being right made me chuckle out LOUD! May you and PWLT have a safe journey and lots of enjoyment.

  6. I hope you both have a lovely trip. I, too, am sometimes amused at how my great age means my grandchildren can't understand my simple English. I once explained pounds, shillings and pence to a grand-daughter and she commented, "Gee, everyone must have been smart in the old days!" Of course, I assured her she was correct.

  7. "Feed the birds, tuppence a bag"...I love that song from "Mary Poppins".
    I had already seen that story about the big squid and I thought of you when I saw it...hmmm...that doesn't sound very nice, does it? ;-)

  8. How odd that the post office worker wouldn't make the mental connection between "tuppenny" and 2 p; it really doesn't sound that different.
    You are kidding about that "wind" quote, aren't you?

    1. Sadly, the wind quote is genuine. Makes you want to weep, doesn't it.

  9. What a melee of pills, giant squid, static charge electric machine, stamps and tuppence, and to take the cake....the political hot wind. Think about how much he is being paid to spew such rhetoric from his hot a dragon talking nonsense.

  10. Even I know about tuppence, and I'm a yank living in quaint, historical Sylvania Township.

    I heard the wind quote before, and I really don't know what to think. I know that we in the colonies have a related saying about Chicago being the windy city.

    Have a good time on your vacation and please don't forget to post some pictures.


Hello - thanks for dropping by to leave a comment. Your comments are much appreciated even if I don't always reply. They will appear as soon as they have been moderated.

Blog Archive