(For starters – a footnote: apparently not every version of English carries the same insinuations for words and phrases used in this story so things could be relatively meaningless to a goodly number of readers??)
All I did at breakfast was to ask Freda if she wanted toast or crumpet.
“I want crumpet. What do you want?”
She took offence.
By crumpet I meant the cake with a soft, porous texture, made from a yeast mixture cooked on a griddle and eaten toasted and buttered. She took it to infer that by crumpet I meant her to be an object of sexual desire.
“Look,” I said trying to explain. “I was trying to be kind and you took it the wrong way. I wasn’t trying to butter you up.”
“There you go again,” expostulated Freda. “Can’t you treat me as a human being? Covering me in butter and devouring me like some sort of cheap slice.”
“It’s toast then,” I said. “How would you like your eggs done?”
“Oh for goodness sake, I should never have stayed the night. To discuss my ovaries first thing in the morning is beyond belief. I’m leaving. I’m tired of your insinuations.”
She left. The moral of this tale is never have the editor of a dictionary stay over for breakfast.
Fergus was pickling cucumbers. There were many recipes but the one he was using was called “Bread and Butter”. The recipe for pickled cucumbers had explained that it was called “Bread and Butter Pickled Cucumbers” because the pickled cucumbers tasted delicious on bread and butter.
Fergus had never pickled cucumbers before. The recipe said to begin by finely slicing the cucumbers. The quantity on the recipe said to finely slice eight medium-sized cucumbers. So far Fergus had carefully sliced two cucumbers and it had taken ages. His wife said “Don’t be so fussy darling”. So he began slicing them hurriedly and not so perfectly.
He was just beginning to slice his fourth cucumber when he cut off the top of a finger. On the way home from the hospital Fergus’ wife popped into a shop and bought a large jar of Bread and Butter Pickled Cucumbers for half the price of eight fresh cucumbers.
Then real tragedy struck. Once home they opened the jar of cucumbers, got out the sliced bread, and discovered they were out of butter.
It had rained all week. Sometimes the showers were quite heavy and accompanied by thunder. Trixie was trapped inside for four days with her five school age children. It was the “summer” break. Her husband was somewhere up in Alaska on some business with oil. He wouldn’t be back for another week.
What does one do with five children aged five to twelve (including the twins) stuck inside for a week? The colouring-in books were finished; the computer games had run their course (at least the time Trixie allotted for computer games had run their course); jigsaws were done; cards were played… Even the guitar sat abandoned and untuned in the corner of a now fairly messy living room.
The rain had caused havoc. Surface water covered backyard lawns. The roads weren’t dangerous rivers but still required much care. The local park was a lake!
“Come on children,” declared Trixie. “Leave your raincoats behind. We’re going to the park.”
Off they went in the rain complete with soccer ball. Never was such muddy fun had! They were a family of drowned rats – including Trixie. Soon they were joined by a few other families, maybe twenty people in all. By now the playing field was in a fairly muddy condition, but Nature sorts out such things, and it is what parks are for.
Back home they couldn’t stop talking about it! All were showered, dried, and changed. Trixie baked some cinnamon buns with lashing of melted butter.
If there’s one thing I can’t stand it is finger prints in the butter. I’m not talking about people who purposely stick a finger in the butter. I’m talking about what my wife does.
We use a butter dish; not like those people who leave the block of butter in the wrapper. We at least have some semblance of respectability. But then when the butter runs out my wife unwraps another block of butter and picking up the block she plonks it on the butter dish. That’s when the finger prints appear on the side of the block. As if it doesn’t matter.
And then, as sure as eggs, the door handle to the refrigerator will be all sticky with butter because after she plonks the block of butter on the butter dish she puts it in the fridge. Hence butter all over the fridge handle.
I’ve put up with this now for thirty-two years. I said to her, “Look, I’ve put up with this for thirty-two years. Can’t you stop putting fingerprints in the butter?”
She’s as stubborn as an ox, my wife. I’ve started to notice greasy butter on a lot of things apart from the fridge door handle. The knife I use to slice the bread is often greasy, and so are the salt and pepper shakers. Butter grease is growing, and all because she picks up the block of butter and plonks it on the butter dish, and then goes and touches everything.
I like ice cream and I don’t mind a spoon or two of it at the end of the meal. My wife doesn’t like ice cream. Yet I notice the ice cream container is all greasy and the spoon in the ice cream is double greasy. She’s doing the butter thing on purpose. In fact, it’s got so bad that I have to wash my hands after I’ve eaten a quota of ice cream. Enough is enough. And now it’s the honey pot.
It was Ash Wednesday. Cecily never enjoyed Lent. Every year it was the same. Every year, for six weeks, she gave up butter. No butter on her toast in the mornings. No butter on her lunchtime sandwich. Cecily loved butter.
Giving up butter served two purposes: it was some personal sacrifice to make during Lent in the build-up to Easter, and it helped keep the weight down. It’s amazing how a mere six weeks without butter could work wonders with the waistline.
Cecily had eleven grandchildren. They were all coming on Easter Day for a celebration. And they did! What a lovely time! What a lovely day! Quite the loveliest way to celebrate Easter!
“And you know,” said Cecily to her eleven grandchildren, “the thing I most like about Easter Sunday is butter. I always give up butter for Lent.”