Thursday, September 04, 2008

Things I learned this week, or how to greet someone while sitting on a camel

1. Taxi is probably the most international word in the world today.
Followed closely by: sex, ok, pizza and chai.
The latter will apparently get you a cup of tea from Bangladesh to Russia. It might even work in Malaysia. Although, be warned, in a number of places it might not be the cuppa you are used to.

2. In Sardinia, there used to be a woman in every village called the acabadora who would put the sick and dying out of their misery with a little hammer. The last reported incident was in 1978.

3. The all-American gesture of the high five actually originated from Prophet Muhammed and his followers in 6th century Arabia. It was the easiest way to greet someone when sitting on a camel.

Don't you just love the internet? My younger daughter sent me the link to interesting and totally useless cultural stuff like that, see here.

And what have I learned on my own? The fascinating fact that farting is the favoured subject of conversation in four-year-old boys, ranking up there just behind their interest in having mac and cheese for lunch.
Every day.

Sigh.

11 comments:

Jason said...

Speaking of hamburgers, Hungry Jacks in Australia has brought out its "Quad Stack Burger", for which it is being criticised in the local press. 4520 kJ (1000 calories), 71g of fat (34.7g saturated), 1930 milligrams of sodium. Ugh. I haven't had fast food in about 15 years, so the very thought is disgusting.

What's most tragic is that by selling this kind of rubbish, kids get addicted to the ultra-high salt, sugar and fat. No wonder obesity levels continue to climb.

hrugaar said...

The acabadora phenomenon sounds fascinating, and strangely enlightened. I wonder how they rated job satisfaction.

glenda larke said...

Jason - just in case you don't know, mac 'n' cheese is kidspeak for macaroni and cheese. You are probably right about the salt content though, as there are many mac n cheese quick meals on the market for kids.

Satima Flavell said...

Ordering tea can certainly be an adventure. In some places "black tea" means "black, as opposed to white" (i.e. with milk) while in others it means "black, as opposed to green". and in some places if you ask for chai that's exactly what you'll get. and I hate chai:-(

Coffee's a safer bet. At least if you ask for black coffee that is generally what you'll get!

Jo said...

Yes, chai is a big favourite in this neck of the woods, I don't much like it either. In the south if you ask for tea you are likely to get iced tea, ask for chai and you might get blank looks. As for Kraft mac 'n cheese, that is a staple in all of North America. I said the other day I should try it and see what it is really like.

That Quad Stack Burger sounds really disgusting I agree Jason. They criticise North America for their oversized portions, but I've not heard of anything so huge here.

hrugaar said...

I see the 'Quad Stack' article says you could eat one of them and then survive the rest of the day on just fruit and veg - presumably including salad - which would actually suit me okay. And I like burgers with bacon and cheese.

Okay, so I'm a lost cause ... :\

Jo said...

Definitely a lost cause Ru, I would think it would take the best part of a day to eat that anyway. Apart from which, what about the variety during your day's meals. Boooring.

hrugaar said...

Um, apart from cereal first thing in the morning, I only really have one meal a day, early evening. Unless I'm on holiday.

But yeah, the Quad Stack would probably take me most of the evening to get through. :D

Jason said...

I feel so ignorant. Macaroni cheese never occurred to me, perhaps because it's been so many years since I had it (I do recall it being a favourite in my pre-teens and teens).

My co-worker who ate the Quad Stack subsequently snacked on a box of mini-Mars Bars. He'd had a chicken roll an hour or two before. Some people just have big appetites, I guess.

I'd only eat something like the Quad Stack under (extreme) duress. After so many years of low-fat, low-joule eating, the cognitive barrier to indulging in such excess is just too high.

Satima Flavell said...

It's eating stuff like that has given Oz the dubious distinction of being the worlds fattest nation. America used to beat us hands down in the fatness stakes, but alas, no longer:-(

Jo said...

I didn't know Oz had beaten the US in the fatness stakes, however, reading about the Quad Stack, I'm not surprised. I don't know why people don't wake up and realise what these enormous burgers etc. etc. are doing to them. Its easy enough to put on weight eating fairly normally, let alone eating things like that.