Sunday, January 24, 2010

A cheerful look makes a dish a feast

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Hard times means economy with the victuals, parsimony in the plate and pared down portions.

A plain meal can be a wholesome dish and saving the pennies need not mean your food won't be doing you good. In fact, the need to tighten your belt might be the best thing ever for your health. The quality of food can be high even if it costs little. A good vegetable broth is filling and full of vitamins and minerals and cheap to make. The cheaper cuts of meant can be rich in valuable proteins.

But what we are being reminded of here is that however meagre your fare if it is served by a pleasant person and eaten in good company you are the equal of a king.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

If a first you don't succeed with a limerick

Regular readers of this blog will know that I have an interest in Limerick writing. Currently, I am acting as a judge in a Valentine Day verse competition run by Hallmark Cards UK.

This is great fun as people send in their entries by Twitter. The 140 character limit makes it pretty difficult to write a traditionally structured limerick, and it is necessary to use textspeak. Here is an example

Now wanted for A lonely heart
An actress who can play the part.
A starlet with style
And wonderful smile,
But you'll do, my love, for a start!

As you must include @hallmarkcards it is an exercise in ingenuity to make it fit.

@hallmarkcards Wanted for A lonely heart Actress who cn play the part Starlet w/ style Wonderful smile But U'll do, my love, for a start

Hints and tips are available from my web site on How to twitter Limericks

It is free to have a go so join in and you might win a luxury holiday for two as a prize.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

A snow year, a rich year

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Or as the French say, "neige qui tombe, engraisse". This saying probably grew from observation by experienced peasants who saw a connection between years of high snow fall and subsequent good crop yields. Modern scientists tell us that the snow contains nitrogen from the air, and as we all know, this is an important fertilizer. Cold also helps to kill off harmful pests.

Proverbs often have layers of meaning, and perhaps there is a general concept here of tough times leading to better ones. Recessions have the positive effect of removing weak and badly run businesses so that the better ones prosper. At the time of writing, much of the Northern part of the world shivers under snow and frost, and also has a deep recession, but the future will be sunny and prosperous for those who come through it.

Sunday, January 03, 2010

He that is full of himself is very empty

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The person who thinks only of themselves and wants everyone else to know how great they are have provoked sayings like: empty vessels make the most noise.

The truly great person is too busy doing things to be singing their own praises. Another apt saying is: by their fruits shall ye know them. A person is best judged by their deeds and accomplishments rather than their boasts.

In the modern world there is a tendency to use spin and deceit to con people into valuing the valueless and voting for the witless; but as Winston Churchill said: "you can fool some of the people all of the time and all of the people some of the time but you can't fool all of the people all of the time".

Friday, January 01, 2010

New Year Limericks

Here are a couple of limericks to mark the end of 2009 and the beginning of 2010

The Old Year has come to an end
Solutions to next we have penned.
But try as we may
Most soon go astray
And it's back to the boring old trend.

A really good New Year to all
I'm hoping your troubles are small.
The year that's to be
Surprises will see,
But wherever you are have a ball!

Proverbs are often rhythmical and poetic as this adds to their aura of wisdom and makes them easier to remember.