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||My Dear Mr. Nicey,|
In response to NickQ’s complaint about tea/biscuit choices in the Land of the Free and the Home of the Brave, let me make a few suggestions:
You can always get a cup of tea with piping hot water at McDonalds. The tea is their house-brand which tastes like Lipton yellow label and they’ll give you artificial creamer in a little tub, but it will be really really hot. (You can buy a carton of milk if you really need it). McDonalds uses superheated water for their coffee which was the subject of a lawsuit: a woman suffered severe burns when she spilled her cup on herself while driving. (The interaction between eating, automotive travel, and litigation is very American). As for the biscuit (a.k.a cookie), any supermarket will have several kinds of Italian cookies by a company called Stella D’Oro (originally located in the Bronx, New York, but they’re now owned by Nabisco so there’s national distribution) – the best are the Lady Stella assortment. Buy a box and you’ll agree with Harold Macmillian – you never had it so good. They also have a chocolate center cookie which used to be made with non-dairy chocolate so that orthodox Jews could eat it as a dessert after eating meat. (The rules of kashrut forbid mixing dairy and meat products within a set interval). They’re as good or better than anything on offer in the U.K. except for McVities’ Milk Chocolate digestives (hallowed by thy name).
|Nicey replies: Thanks David,
The genuine hot water from McDonalds is a very good tip indeed.
Your report on the Holiday Inn survey gives support to your eminently useful suggestion in your NCOTAASD book that hotel guide books should introduce a symbol (to go alongside the ones denoting swimming pool, dog sitting, cable tv etc) to denote the type of biscuit that they provide along with the miniature kettle and sachet of Nescafe. Clearly business men and women are heavily influenced by biscuits and your idea could spark a revolution in the hospitality industry.
Have you patented the idea?
With very best wishes
|Nicey replies: I used to work with online hotel booking systems where the hoteliers had to fill in all the features and benefits of their accommodation. I did manage to get the company to let me put in a tick box for biscuits in the room although obviously I was pitching for a full breakdown of exactly what types and quality quantity etc. As far as I know only one hotel every ticked the box.
I still think a little plastic facsimile of the in-room biscuits on their sign next to the stars, diamonds, crowns or whatever would be good.
|Pete aka Sadistician
I love tea (as the title of this email may suggest slightly), and I also produce music... Hence or otherwise I have made a tune all about Tea! You can download it from www.thecentrifuge.co.uk if you're interested. Let me know what you think if do...! The track is called 'Tea Fetish' and features my mate's mum...!
Pete aka Sadistician
P.s I was watching an episode of 'Father Ted' recently,and it involved a visiting preist being offered the choice of 'biscuit or cake' with his tea... What would you go for? (given the prerequisite of having to choose one or the other...?)
|Nicey replies: Hey Pete aka Sadistician,
Well done on the long kettle coming to the boil intro to your song, I enjoyed that part. Your friends mother however sounded a bit like she had been burning the candle at both ends.
In such a situation as cake or biscuit always go with the cake, as you'll get offered the biscuits again after you have finished the cake, in a kind of main course / pudding thing.
Also as it is St Patrick's day well done on bringing up the Farther Ted reference. I must away now to get Wifey her Guinness.
I am a Brit Yorkshire Tea Gold drinker who has been living in the States for four years. My mum regularly ships me boxes of Yorkshire Tea together with fruit pastilles and bournville chocolate. I discovered your site through facebook, on which my profile shows that I am a big fan of sitting. I just want to thank you for your site, which helps curb my pangs for people who understand about Weetabix, Hobnobs, and Jaffa Cakes. You say any of those words over here and just get blank expressions, never mind trying to rejoice in the miraculous properties of a good cup 'o tea. I have succeeded in finding Weetabix (in the ORGANIC section!) and Hobnobs at our local Wegmans, which is quite a wonderful supermarket with over 700 types of cheese, but isn't a patch on Sainsbury's.
One thing that is quite wondrous about these ahead-of-the-curve American people, they still use stove top kettles! It took me quite a lot of time and effort to find an electric kettle! Good grief.
I share your frustration over those origami-less folks who insist on correcting your grammar. I do a lot of writing in my job, and am now so thoroughly confused between British and American rules that I just throw as many commas as I can into the wash and hope for the best. At least I have the excuse of "oh, that's how we say it in England" when I am corrected.
Georgina Bath, from Preston living in Baltimore.
|Nicey replies: Yes we've discussed the USA's kettle issues many a time on NCOTAASD. Its been said that American electricity isn't as good as British Electricity either so even if you manage to get a kettle its only running on 120v or something rather than proper 240v. I'm sure that the current as well as the voltage has a bearing too and this is all anecdotal. Plus we have had some shirty messages saying that its very easy to get useful kettles in the US.
As for Facebook we have put Wifey in charge of all that side of things. She looks after our social-networking apparently I look after all of our anti-social responsibilities.
||Wonderful site - but has making tea really come to this? A tea bag? Dreadful. For instructions on "real tea" (in the same manner as "real ale") please visit our tea page|
Also a tea quiz - see link at bottom of page.
Keep up the good work.
Philip & Catheryn
|Nicey replies: Philip,
Whilst I'm very pleased to use at least four of our tea icons to go along with your mail, I would urge restraint on your part and not to descend into full blown tea fascism. A live and let live attitude is the enlightened path unless of course you are having to drink somebody else's ropey tea, then its all right to have a go especially if you are having to pay for it.
One pound forty on the P&O Dover Calais ferry for half a cup of warm water drizzled over a one cup bag with a small plastic pot of milk, now that's something to get upset about. These vessels are now effectively the very edge of British tea culture. Leaving our shores they are the last chance for a cuppa in a place that should recognise the significance of such a thing. They are also a welcoming sight for the weary travelling Brit and should be a stronghold and embodiment of mass tea provision, in a way that we can be both grateful for and proud of.
Of dear you appear to have set me off on one now.