A toast to Shakespeare and his best bready quotes…

When you take the time to read through the works of Shakespeare, you will find that he really loved his bread.  Here’s my personal favourites…

“The crust of true loaf never did run smooth.”

“Tea cake, or not tea cake, that is the question.”

“Loaf alters not with his brief hours and days,
But bears it out even to the edge of its best before date
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loaved.”

“When Loaf speaks, the voice of all the breads
Makes heaven drowsy with the fermentation.”

“Eat me or leave me
Both are in my favour…
If you eat me I will be in your digestional tract
If you leave me I will grow old and mouldy.”

“My bread is as boundless as the sea,
My loaf as deep; the more I give to thee,
The more I have, for both are infinite.”

“Some are born bready. Some achieve breadiness, and some have bread thrust upon them.”

“No legacy is so rich as merry berry’s triple chocolate fudge gateaux supreme.”

 

Mind of an eagle, body of a seagull.

The seagle is a misunderstood creature. The mind of an eagle born into the body of a seagull. Rhymes with beagle. His piers, pun intended, would hang around the local chippies and seaside amusements waiting for easy prey. But he is not content to stoop to this level of unorganised crime, for in time you will see, the seagle is a classy bird. He will never be a jail bird, because he is the early bird. He likes to plan what he’s having for tea. It could a worm, or it could be the tasting menu at the Fat Duck, because although cheep doesn’t automatically mean bad quality, why take the risk. He doesn’t like the sea, because he’s not a seagull. And he doesn’t doesn’t like bays, because he’s not a bagel. And even if he was a bagel, he’d be no plain bagel… He’d be the Everything Bagel. The best bagel; topped with all the seeds, and packed full of sausage, egg and cheese!

Toaster racing from Towcester

Today is #NationalToastDay.

Here at Bread Quarters myself and Davy Scones have been thinking about racing from Towcester, and not just racing from Towcester but racing with toasters. Two two-slice toasters live from Towcester.

And what a fine day it is for toaster racing. The ground is bread level, and no chance of rain. Nasty accident last week at Market Raisin where one of the toast jockeys got electrocuted in a freak shower mid race. Such are the hazards of racing electric toasters in the rain. Today’s toasters are Red Crumb, a famous thoroughbread in the red and white silks, and Tea Biscuit from the successful McVites’ stable, hoping to add to recent success in the Cheltenham Gold Cupcake.

So how can you get involved today beyond raising and eating toast? You can help us name the rest of the toasters in the line up. Red Crumb and Tea Biscuit are the favourites, but who is the competition? Could it be Whisk Aversion, Sweet Buns of Mercy or Roll of Thunder? Let us know your suggestions 🙂 

And if you enjoy racing toasters, you’ll love what’s coming up next week… It’s tracing toasters, with Tony Tart.

The real story of Little Bo Peep and her tasty sheep.

Little Bo Peep has eaten her all her sheep

She pretends not to know their whereabouts 

But for how long can she this secret keep

Before the pressure builds and out she spouts 

 

Kebabs, lamb stew, roasted leg with mint sauce

She loves her sheep but not as first we thought 

Her secret safe, we call Inspector Morse

To investigate and a villain caught 

 

Her alibi, she says she was asleep 

So turn to those who would have been awake 

To ask of the sheep and where they would keep 

Such stolen goods before a chance to bake 

 

Into a pie intended for a king

Or maybe for its fleece to make a coat 

A fancy one with red and silver bling

The best, the only coat in which to gloat 

 

And so the criminal hipster is born

His fancy coat and fancy beard, are weird   

His music unknown, the 60s reborn? 

No hippies here, these are hipsters as feared 

 

Little Bo Peep might her secret have kept 

Except the smell, of sweet delicious meat 

Caught red handed into her house she crept 

But the inspector grabbed her by her feet 

 

And arrested her, for wasting his day

When he could have been fighting crime elsewhere 

Catching the baddies and making them pay 

So he left and give a dirty stare 

 

How dare she eat her sheep then bare face lie

What did she hope to achieve by all this? 

It doesn’t make sense we should just say bye

She’s clearly not right, something oddly a miss 

You can’t say that any more.

Question… Are you still allowed to ask for a ‘black’ or ‘white’ coffee? Or, as I have recently been asked several times in coffee shops, must you request it ‘with’ or ‘without’ milk? I am happy to be an early adopter on such matters so not to have my beliefs, opinions or intentions misconstrued, but I keep missing the memos. As soon as I heard the word ‘lady’ had become unacceptable I have updating my lexicon and have been lovingly correcting my fellow humans to say ‘woman’ instead. I don’t think it is just a conspiracy between the Guardian newspaper and Liverpool football club, but a lot of people missed the memo on that one.

I called this post ‘You can’t say that any more’ but a better title would have been to borrow from Jean Baudrillard and John Connor and call it ‘The loss of sarcasm and the rise of emoticons’… But I thought you might judge me, so I didn’t.

The Loss of Sarcasm.

I would rather talk to someone than send them a message. It doesn’t need to be a long conversation but it allows for the best form of communication, sarcasm. The beautiful art of saying the opposite of what you mean, sadly loses its magic in a digital format. Emoticons offer some assistance, but is it too late?

We are encouraged to send shorter and shorter messages. Continually reviewing the necessity of each word in a sentence required for it to still make sense, until we are left with no words at all, only a series of emoticons. It is concise, which I like, but this new language is seeping out of the matrix and into the real world… and it doesn’t work. A winking emoticon to highlight the use of digital sarcasm is fine, but when you wink IRL after a sarcastic comment, the comment is then perceived as your actual opinion, and at best you will be labelled a flirt. And so it is, that the emoticons have taken over.

Self educate, self regulate.

We are allotted a probation period in life to learn how to walk and talk, learn maths and geography and how to drive etc… But when it comes to life’s more challenging hurdle of digital social interactions you just get handed the keys with no handbook or instruction. There is no learning curve either. No chance to say something naive, no chance to learn from your mistakes, or change your mind, no chance to grow up.

We are taught that if we haven’t got anything good to say, you shouldn’t say anything at all. But who is deciding what is good? Maybe the best solution then is just not say anything at all. Just in case. You have the right to freedom of speech of course, but you understand the catch is that whilst you have the right to express your opinions, by voicing them you are agreeing to be judged by them. Legally by the authorities, but also socially judged by the politically correct police, as well as the haters and the trolls. Sometimes it is difficult to distinguish too.

Nothing new. 

All that said, maybe its nothing new. If something is free, there is usually a catch. Sometimes it’s clear, sometimes written in a very small font. And other times it is hidden.

Take an old example… Garden of Eden. God says you can eat anything you want, just don’t eat from ‘that’ tree. Hidden catch, there are also a number of poisonous berries and fish which if you try to eat will kill you too. Not as bad as the apple from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil though, just normal death, so it was decided to leave that warning out. Another ommission from the instruction manual for the early colonists of planet Earth is that there are a number of wild animals that might try and kill you. Some to eat you, some because it is in their nature, and others as a defence mechanism. I like to think Jesus at this point was in favour of making all the animals talk to avoid any awkward misunderstandings and accidental eating of humans, but when they put it to the vote the Father and the Holy Spirit were against the idea. 2-1 again.

 

 

 

The perfect question to divide a room.

Sometimes it is necessary to divide up a group of people, but far too often this is handled insensitively.

Even from an early age we experience this emotional stress when being chosen last when picking sides for football or a friendly game of rounders. Or which school you can attend based on your ability to pass an exam or the size of your parent’s bank account.

Into the adult world of university and work there is now a politically correct tightrope which is not forgiving of your intention nor interested in your apology. Divide, delegate, or demote at your peril.

So here it is. The perfect question to divide a room without prejudice (perceived or otherwise), bias or fear of the trolls that live in the cloud…

Do you stand up or sit down when wiping your bottom?

It works first time, every time. And if you need to further divide the group there is a follow up question which works equally as well…

Do you fold or scrunch?

The practical implications are huge. For example, you may have male and female toilets in your place of work, but are struggling for space to also build a disabled and gender neutral toilet (which should really be called gender fluid anyway to embrace the natural play on words). With the Perfect Question you can now have a toilet for people who stand when they wipe, and another for those who sit. Plus with a little bit of creativity you don’t even need to buy new signs…

Screenshot 2018-11-28 at 11.46.10

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

How to Walk Like a Chicken in 7 Easy Steps.

This video has been 18 years in the making. Myself and a friend Laura were taught the chicken walk by a stranger in a field in Manchester in the year 2000. Ever since, I have been passing on the knowledge to all who would accept the challenge. I have always declined any invitation to perform the chicken walk, instead offering to teach it.

Now it is your turn to learn. And your opportunity to share it with the next generation of chicken walkers.