Sunday, April 06, 2008

25th Wedding Anniverary - Great time

Tracy, with help in the kitchen (Andy mostly) had done a super job and the food was magnifico. Far too many dishes to talk you through. On the right of this table was a 'hot table' also with cheese and biccies, where eventually puddings appeared. The cream jug looked like a quart (TJ knows her brother's little vices).

Most people had at least seconds, and I suspect thirds, in some cases. And there wasn't much in the way of left-overs, which speaks volumes. People had gone to so much trouble. The centre-piece cake had been organised by Lisa bless her! Hannah had done couscous which was delicious and Sky and Brooke had made us a homemade anniversary cake. Also delicious and, I was assured, didn't have 'real witches blood' this time, like the Halloween cakes. Altogether there were 7 grandchildren between 3 and 10 and Alannah at nearly 18. Plus all the relevant adults.

Lots and lots of games were played from the ever popular hide & seek, lego, and hedbanz a great game for all ages. Rather like 'Whats my Line' and 'Twenty Questions' modernised and much more fun. And the kids are so good at it. Also, 'wrapping people up as snowmen' which, within our family is a sure-time winner, always. Simply, with loads of white toilet rolls, people are wrapped up until they look like convincing snowmen. Very appropriate because it kept actually snowing outside.

As I was physically unable to circulate, people circulated to me instead and I had lots of lovely chats. Alannah has finally decided she wants to read English Literature at Leeds. And John and Yvonne (thats John's Yvonne) assure us that they expect her to get the necessary grades.

She loves literature and it is her best subject. Genes or what? I told her I would have loved to have done Eng.Lit and so did Y - who finished up getting a B.Sc mainly in Economics, - oh to be young again and just starting out. I don't actually mean that - but when she was telling me all about it, I glowed with pride at her achievements.

Picture 2 is Lisa arriving with the cake. Smashing idea - Y and I were each represented by a fizzy sparkler and in between us was a sparkler heart. Ahhh !

Comments..... Bungus.... I didn't mean to start name-dropping. It happened in my defence of The Telegraph.

Chrystal Phallus is actually very clever 'innit? with its resonance of Crystal Palace. which I would have loved to have seen. The pictures I have seen also look magnificent so I guess the actual structure must have been awesome. Just came along too late I suppose.

We need more work on 'spic and span' I think. My Online Etymological Dictionary suggests:- spic-and-span Look up spic-and-span at 1665, from spick-and-span-new (1579), lit. "new as a recently made spike and chip of wood," from spick "nail" (see spike (n.1)) + span-new "very new" (c.1300), from O.N. span-nyr, from spann "chip" + nyr "new." Imitation of Du. spiksplinter nieuw "spike-splinter new."

Nifty Googler may fare better tomorrow.

For some reason photo-club judges always mark out of twenty. I knew why once but have forgotten. Whatever the reason - well done. I usually get in about the 12 mark, on a good night !
Sorry about your chicken. At 6lbs 'oven ready' I would have treated it as a 'boiling foul' and wouldn't have roasted it.

Jill....... The weather is seasonal isn't it? Snow in April isn't at all unusual I guess. Anyway I think we all have serious doubts about 'global warming'.

As you will realise from the above I was determined that Magwitch wasn't going to spoil today. Hot pads, lots of pain-killers but, unfortunately moving about in the classic 'gunslingers crouch' and extremely slowly, is all that is possible. Instead of two guns I tote two sticks !!

And we've got National Trust tomorrow. But we shall cope. Nice of you to suggest an estate car in which I could stretch out. I suppose a hearse would serve the same purpose ?

I'm a little done for so I'm going to turn in. Catch you tomorrow. Sleep tight.



bungus said...

Pleased the Silver Wedding celebrations were a success.
You obviously enjoyed it a great deal. With Sandra and myself living ‘over the brush’ for 21 years, I shall have to wait until I am 90 to enjoy a similar occasion. I doubt if I shall find it memorable; not much else is! (in view of the following, that was a minor joke).

I wasn’t serious about the name-dropping, just taking a bit of bodily fluid.

Although Crystal Palace burnt down, a small-scale, similar building by the same architect/engineer, Paxton, may be seen at Chatsworth, viz, the greenhouse (I actually like the new one rather better).

I don’t think your spick & span definitions, although interesting and perhaps ‘nailing’ it, add much spick or span to the meaning.
It all seems to mean ‘new and new new’ which strikes me as more than a bit tautological.

Having learnt that you do quite well to score 12/20 for your snaps (just joking), I am preening!

Although 6lbs 'oven ready', the chicken was only a few weeks old (there’s another hanging in the garage awaiting plucking and drawing). Perhaps it will have acquired a bit more flavour.

I have a clear picture of you slinking about on your 18” walking sticks – quite alarming, down some dark alley (in a Dickensian Magwitch way).

The snow came late to Ollerton (evening) and temporarily gave a quarter millimetre of cover. We had seen a sprinkling earlier at Sandra’s sister’s in West Bridgford. Bro-in-law Norman described it as a ‘can nearly count ‘em’ fall, an expression I had not heard before. He also recalled the double seats at a cinema, which he described as ‘fingerstalls’; another expression of which I was unaware and which he was quite prepared to explain until stopped by popular acclaim. His best bit though was at lunch (see e-mail). There was a choice of fish pie (which I had, and was excellent) or lasagne (mince!). Hostess Jennifer asked would you like some parmesan on your lasagne, Norman? to which he replied “No thanks, Jen. I’ve got plenty here”.
The occasion was a family party and having checked that no one was ill, and that I could have a bed if needed, I decided to attend if only to prevent Sandra’s other extant sister (the eldest) visiting me which she has been eager to do! She is lovely in her own way but far too fussy and enquiring. We had a good homemade tomato soup to start, and oranges in liqueur and (homemade) blackberry & apple pie to follow. All very nice and I was glad I had elected to attend. I even enjoyed driving there and back.

I recall 1975 when snow stopped cricket in Derbyshire at the beginning of June. By the end of the same week we entered a heat wave which lasted through September.

It doesn’t do to believe what the papers say.
You just wait until your garden becomes a beach.

We don’t get weather in Ollerton; our camellia still looks great.

anonymousrob said...

This is from - Spick and span


Entirely new - fresh or unused.


The noun spick has various meanings, or rather it had various meanings, as it is now rarely used outside of spick and span. These include: a side of bacon, a floret of lavender, a nail or spike, a thatching spar.

Likewise span has/had several meanings, including: the distance from the tip of the thumb to the tip of the little finger, a measure of butter, a fetter or chain, a chip of wood (as the Norse word spann-nyr).

Just from those meanings, and there are more, we could generate sixteen possible combinations to form spick and span. It isn't clear which, if any, of those words were used when coining the phrase. Some clue might come from the fact that the phrase is very old and was originally spick and span-new. This is cited in Sir Thomas North's translation of Plutarch's Lives of the noble Grecians and Romanes, 1579:

"They were all in goodly gilt armours, and brave purple cassocks apon them, spicke, and spanne newe."

The alliteration in the phrase suggests the possibility that that one of the two words alluded to cleanliness and freshness and that the other just followed along. Which one is most associated with the qualities of spick and span? The suggestions most frequently made are that spick is a variant of spike or nail. In the 16th century nails were made of iron and soon tarnished. It is quite plausible that new nails would have become synonymous with cleanliness. We have the phrase as neat as a new pin, which has just that meaning. The old Dutch word spikspeldernieuw refers to newly made ships. The OED suggests that this is the origin of spick, although they offer no reason for that belief and none of the early citations of the phrase refer to shipping. As for span, chips of wood also display the same fresh, sharp-edged qualities and seem to be a plausible source for the use of the word here.

Note: the word spoon, which was originally a wooden item, derives from spon - a variant of span. It has been suggested that the early American term for a knife and fork was spike and spon and that this relates to keeping clean by using utensils rather than fingers. That takes no account of the use of the phrase prior to the colonization of America by English-speaking people though.

Spicke, and spanne newe later migrated into simply spick and span which is first found in Samuel Pepys' Diary, 1665:

"My Lady Batten walking through the dirty lane with new spicke and span white shoes."

All in all, the derivation of the term isn't clear and our best efforts to explain it so far are little more than informed guesses.

Any help?

I have been told today I have a job until 31 March next year, same money, but this time persuading employers to recruit people with disabilities. Might be a tadge easier that offenders.

Where does 'tadge' come from?


anonymousrob said...

I suppose I should post a congratulations to Sheffield Steelers on winning the Elite Ice Hockey League's Play-Off final yesterday. But I couldn't care less what they do - bring on next season and a better, more consistent Panthers performance.

I don't know the story of the game from Field Mill on Saturday - was it a point gained or two points dropped? A win would have made Notts Co much more nervous but, it seems to me, it's still too early for the Stags to give up. Maybe both Notts and the Stags can win enough to drag Macclesfield into the relegation zone - here's hoping. I've never liked Macclesfield since I saw them kick Boston Utd off the park in the old Northern Premier League many, many years ago.

A saying by my ex-father-in-law in reference to women - "You've got to try them all, you might miss a good 'un"

A saying by my ex-mother-in-law in response "A hard man is good to find"


Anonymous said...

I just went out to put some bread out for the birds and found a visitor, Your 'Buzzard'seems to be working his way down Church lane.