Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Another crabby comment

I happened to tune in to CNN news this morning on the television. That was the device we used to use in the days before the internet. There was a young lady reading the news who had obviously failed at her first choice profession of nursery school teacher because her condescending manner and her fixed grin would have been too nauseating for even the most precious four year old.

She described a new genus of crustacean that had been found deep in the Pacific.

“It is about 15cms long, that’s the size of a salad plate”. I had to rewind to make sure that my hearing was not deceiving me. I don’t mind being told about how big a centimetre is. It was inches, feet, yards, chains and furlongs when I was at school, and I think in those terms. I would tell you how many years ago that was, but for all I know they have since changed the standard measure of time from years and days to be something based upon the lifecycle of a marmoset. That is not the point I was intending to make. I suppose it would have been too easy to say “15 centimetres, that’s about six inches, for all the geriatrics out there”. And yes, I know that men traditionally have a false impression of what six inches is, but, frankly, that would have been good enough for me. I am unlikely ever to come across this creature, or to need to know its precise size, unless I get a job as lobster measurer at the North East Hampshire School of Malacostracology.

But no, a salad plate. Bollocks. Come on, which of you demented bastards out there has a plate specifically for salad?

I need to divert a little. I am not by nature sexist in my outlook, but I do adhere to the conviction that salad is for girls. Salad should only be eaten as a penance. If Mrs S prepared a meal accompanied by salad she would hide it under a lentil or something.

So, what is all this “salad plate” shit? And what, in the name of bollocks, is CNN doing by using such comparisons? Are there really people out there who live in this bizarre universe where it is necessary to define crockery other than by the simple terms “big” and “small”? If there are such people, then I would suggest that they are probably much too busy measuring their falafel skewers to be tuning in to world news programmes.


Richard said...

She's not been round my Mum's house, obviously. Salads are de riguer once the clocks go back and will consist of a great many things guaranteed to make your poos the proper consistency. The thought that one of these (my Mum's salad, not a poo) could possibly fit on a 6" plate is ridiculous. Those plates are for cake, but only so you don't get beetroot juice on your Viennese Whirl. I will send an email to CNN forthwith.

Vicus Scurra said...

Are you aware that were you to make an honest woman of my 5th cousin once removed, that we would be related?

Richard said...

This is a most curious development.

You would also be related to Bryan Ferry and the late and very great Leslie Ames.

Vicus Scurra said...

email me at

Betty said...

Perhaps Adam would be able to tell us about the importance of the use of the six inch salad plate in American cuisine.

In our house, no plates are used. The husband is of Cornish origin so only eats pasties (a three course meal enclosed in pastry) and I'm of East European origin so I just eat food off the floor.

Sharon J said...

Greetings from your fifth cousin once removed, a lady who is in possession of several salad plates of various designs, several of which are indeed 6 inches in diameter. Of course, when using plates of this particular dimension we're speaking of side-salads as opposed to main-course salads - main-course salads being a working class custom developed through their need to utilise garden produce without wasting costly energy on preparation.

Vicus Scurra said...

Betty. I have doubts as to whether Adam could tell us anything about anything.
And "American Cuisine" is an oxymoron.

Regular readers (AMToNW) will note that I have found that one of my regular contributors is (almost) related to me. Let this serve as a warning to you all.

Adam - have you done any family history research? I guess figuring out which cousin is your grandfather would make it difficult, but you have the right colour hair, and you are certainly ugly enough. Any of your ancestors come from Leicestershire?

Sharon is obviously related, note the high content of what can only be described as 'bollocks' in her post. Other, closer, relations have visited here, but have all been too timid to post.

Richard said...

CNN have replied:

Dear Sir,

You are obviously unaware of the American salad. As is well known across the globe, we now eschew the frippery ostentation of say, a Waldorf and heartily embrace the popular values of economy and froogality (sic) now dominant in our society. American salad plates are therefore designed for 1 (one) leaf of either rocket or lollo rosso and the merest hint of vinaigrette.

Yours etc,

So there you have it. American bodies, after years of being pummelled by relentless onslaughts of protein are being tuned gradually to a kinder, gentler regime. I'm so happy.

Geoff said...

I can only deduce that Richard has been tested to see whether he would gravitate here.

I'd like to think we're all one big family, anyway.

Betty says if Richard's related to Bryan Ferry and he looks like him...phwoooar. Or words to that effect.

Vicus Scurra said...

My guess is that he looks like the Isle of Wight Ferry.

Sharon J said...

He's ferry fat.

Richard said...

I am tested daily, Geoff. Witness above the kind of abuse I have to surrender myself to in order to keep a roof over my head.

You can tell Betty that I share certain characteristics with Mr Ferry. I have the same number of working limbs and our eyes function in much the same manner. I sport a beard, as he has done on occasion. I might be able to do the strand on a table at Mabel's but I've never tried.

The blood line isn't proven yet but we're not sure about that young Otis being part of the breeding stock. Terrible disappointment.

caroline said...

I once bought some 19th century salad plates at an auction. I was tipped off that they were a good buy, once home clutching my lucky find I wondered what salad would have been in the 19th century, before cucumbers and Delia had discovered basil.

Richard and Sharon, I can assit with moving, injuction advice and police protection.

Vicus Scurra said...

Yes, yes, yes. As if anyone is going to take advice from someone who buys salad plates. No matter what vintage.

What was salad like in the 19th Century? Just like it is now. Left on the side of the fucking plate.

Now waits for some genius to start asking about the size of a "fucking plate". Where is Adam when you need him?

zoe said...

i can't believe that you watch CNN.

Vicus Scurra said...

Zoe. I am a man. We play with the remote control, and will flick through channels until the remote control device is warn out. I note that you have buried the twat in the garden. I bet he still has the remote control.
Go to go, Dale Winton is on the home embroidery channel.

Foilwoman said...

I think you must be related to me, although that is too scary to contemplate. And why would anyone want to be related to Bryan Ferry? Too many ys in his name.

Vicus Scurra said...

Foilwoman! A new, and obviously disturbed, contributor.
Tell me (and this will go no further) is your sobriquet indicative of some perversion?
Anyway, you are very welcome. Shall I introduce you to the rest of the cast?

Foilwoman said...

Six months later (I lost the link and just got back here), yes, please do, thank you. No perversion, just an alterego.

Vicus Scurra said...

Ah, dear old friend how nice to hear from you again.
I had forgotten this little thread, it is one of my favourites, as indeed you will be when I introduce you to my friends.

Pearl said...

The size of a salad plate? WTF?!!!

I was thinking it was more the size of your standard aspic plate. Or was it the standard divan's antimacassar?


Vicus Scurra said...

Pearl! At last!