Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Potatoes, Dreams, and Moustaches

I love potatoes. I am sat here right now, and despite not even being hungry, I am pining for a plate of mashed potato with a good lump of butter melting in them. It must be my Irish ancestry.

The potato met plenty of opposition when it first arrived in Europe, particularly from the religious:

Scottish clergymen banned their flocks from planting potatoes, saying that the tubers were unworthy of human consumption because they were not mentioned in the Bible. It is possible that the word "spud" (a common nickname for the potato in English-speaking countries) is an acronym for the Society for the Prevention of an Unwholesome Diet, a nineteenth-century activist group dedicated to keeping the potato out of Britain. The first edition (1768-71) of the Encyclopedia Britannica referred to the potato as a "demoralizing esculent." Esculent is an ostentatious word for food. At least the scholars gave the potato that much credit.

that's taken from here


I had a dream last night that featured a sign painted with the message:



I keep thinking about Sir Richard Burton, the explorer, and the fact that he challenged someone to a duel on the basis that they laughed at his moustache. And from there it's a short hop to Tom, back in England, who I miss so much, you see, Tom once slept the night in Mortlake Cemetery, where Sir Richard enjoys his eternal rest (I wonder if his headstone has elaborate stone moustaches - I can see myself taking a picture of a stuffed raven perching on it...)

The other claim to fame of Mortlake is that the house is where John Dee, the magician, transcribed the Book of Enoch, but there's probably only Alasdair who reads this blog who'd be at all interested in that fact.


Blogger Jim said...

Wow, that link is just stuffed with potato info.

12:23 PM  

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