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Thread: Restore Your Britishness

  1. #71
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by downthecreek View Post
    I'm no beer expert, but my husband knew a thing or two. He set great store by Innis & Gunn - a fine Scottish brew, so I'm told.

    My father always used to refer to American beer as "gnat's piss" as well. Drove my American brother-in-law mad. Now ex, to the great relief of all the family. (Pace, American gents - he was the exception!) But of course, horses for courses. There was something to be said for an ice cold bottle of that piss in the shade under the arches by the 79th Street Boat Basin on an insufferably hot and humid summer day in New York.
    Before we were married - or even had met, SWMBO, who had been living here in the US for a bit, went back to the UK to visit her family. On opening the refrigerator, she found a six-pack of Budweiser. I'm told the exchange went something like this:

    "Mum, just 'cos I'm living in the States doesn't mean that you had to buy me Budweiser!"

    "That's not for you, dear, that's for your father. It's for when he's working in the garden, but doesn't want a beer."

    Step forward a number of years and while we were dating, SWMBO-perhaps-to-be invites me to join her on a visit to the UK to meet friends and family. We arrive on a Saturday ("Don't come to early - there is an England/Wales rugby match on. We won't answer the door.") and I find out that on Sunday evening, "the kitchen is closed" and they head out to the local for dinner and a drink. We arrive at the Brewer's Arms for dinner and her father asks me what I'll have to drink as he heads for the bar. A quick scan of the taps finds some cider, lighter ales, a few ambers and Guinness. "I'll have a pint of Guinness, please." Beaming broadly, he returned to the table with two pints. It was at that moment, I knew that if we were to be married, I'd be accepted in the family.
    "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails."
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  2. #72
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by downthecreek View Post
    I'm no beer expert, but my husband knew a thing or two. He set great store by Innis & Gunn - a fine Scottish brew, so I'm told.
    They do some excellent beers, interesting flavours as they age them in used casks, rum and so on to add depth and flavour to the beer.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  3. #73
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by amish rob View Post
    I will drink Chimay any day. Even if it isnt in the right glass.

    Peace,
    Robert
    i once spent a hazy week in chimay, recovering from the previous week spent in amsterdam
    Simpler is better, except when complicated looks really cool.

  4. #74
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Pless View Post
    i once spent a hazy week in chimay, recovering from the previous week spent in amsterdam
    That.Wasn't.Beer.
    "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails."
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  5. #75
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by Canoez View Post
    There definitely IS good beer available of great variety.
    That's one of the many developments I have seen in my many years of visiting the US to spend time with my family there.

    Another is cheese. American cheese (and american cheese) was pretty awful, but now there's a lot of good cheese around. It doesn't make an appearance over here, though. Come to that, we have masses of wonderful cheeses and very few of them turn up in the US (or, at least, in the excellent specialist shops where my sister shops in New York)

    And then there's wine. I had access to top quality Napa and Sonoma wines 35-40 years ago and, as far as I was concerned, many were near enough undrinkable. Much too alcoholic and "in your face". But American and Canadian wines can be brilliant now - and much more interesting than they used to be.
    "Mozart is the heart's touchstone" (Edwin Fischer)

  6. #76
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    If you cut your beer teeth in the late sixties when the major beer business was chemical keg beer like Watneys, Double Diamond, Worthington E and other such piss, and at 3% alcohol, there was no surprise at the rise in popularity of 'continental' lager style beer, not the lamentable Brit copies, but a trip to France was worth it just for a beer with some flavour and strength...

    When I thought all was lost, along came CAMRA, allegedly one of the few pressure groups who considered disbanding because they had achieved their stated aim of getting real traditional beer back into virtually every pub in the UK. certainly England, as I was surprised recently how hard it was to find 'real' beer in the north and Scotland which still seemed stuck circa 1975 with Tetleys and John Smith's.

    One of England's delights is the trip to almost any provincial town and seeing what the local beer is like.
    Though that is changing too. I was in a pub in Oxford on the solstice and they had six or seven cask beers from six different breweries and counties, and as guest beers, if you went back a week later they'd have six or seven different ones. Served in straight side glasses or a jug if you wanted, with little or no froth or bubbles, at room or cellar temperature, out of the barrel or via the syphon (?) beer engine.
    I don't get this head business on beer... why drink CO2 or nitrogen in Guinness's case with whatever they put in it to make it cling to the glass? Beer. Barley, hops and yeast that's eaten the sugars and shat alcohol.

    But having said all that, I don't rate drinking English ale in 40C, nor any of the excelente ice-cold Portuguese 6% lagers in London when its sleeting. When in Rome etc...
    I used to , in good ex-pat fashion, bring back here Marmite and Colmans mustard and Cumberland sausages, and bloaters, but not anymore.

    It makes the pleasure of having them on home turf so much more excquisite.
    'C'est la vie' say the old folks it goes to show you never can tell

  7. #77
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by downthecreek View Post
    That's one of the many developments I have seen in my many years of visiting the US to spend time with my family there.

    Another is cheese. American cheese (and american cheese) was pretty awful, but now there's a lot of good cheese around. It doesn't make an appearance over here, though. Come to that, we have masses of wonderful cheeses and very few of them turn up in the US (or, at least, in the excellent specialist shops where my sister shops in New York)

    And then there's wine. I had access to top quality Napa and Sonoma wines 35-40 years ago and, as far as I was concerned, many were near enough undrinkable. Much too alcoholic and "in your face". But American and Canadian wines can be brilliant now - and much more interesting than they used to be.
    Last time in London, I spent a week at the Harrod's Food Court cheese counter one afternoon. The woman just wouldn't stop feeding me. "Try this! Made from sheep's milk from Scotland. Try this! Goat's milk from Spain. Try this! Try this!"

    Heavenly.
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  8. #78
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by John of Phoenix View Post
    Last time in London, I spent a week at the Harrod's Food Court cheese counter one afternoon. The woman just wouldn't stop feeding me. "Try this! Made from sheep's milk from Scotland. Try this! Goat's milk from Spain. Try this! Try this!"

    Heavenly.
    Our local Whole Paycheck (Whole Foods) is like this at their cheese counter with domestic and imported cheeses. They're not shy about opening anything up for a tasting. The other thing is that they're knowledgeable about substitutions - so if a particular import called for in a UK recipe isn't available, they can make a suggestion for a good alternative in style and flavor.

    Foods, beer, wine, cider, cheeses, etc. - it all boils down to personal taste and what you like and don't like, but if you don't explore a bit, you'll never know.
    "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails."
    -William A. Ward



  9. #79
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by Paul Pless View Post
    i once spent a hazy week in chimay, recovering from the previous week spent in amsterdam
    Im afraid I might never leave Amsterdam if I ever got there.

    Push bikes and boats? Im in!

    Peace,
    Robert

  10. #80
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by jonboy View Post
    If you cut your beer teeth in the late sixties when the major beer business was chemical keg beer like Watneys, Double Diamond, Worthington E and other such piss, and at 3% alcohol, there was no surprise at the rise in popularity of 'continental' lager style beer, not the lamentable Brit copies, but a trip to France was worth it just for a beer with some flavour and strength...

    When I thought all was lost, along came CAMRA, allegedly one of the few pressure groups who considered disbanding because they had achieved their stated aim of getting real traditional beer back into virtually every pub in the UK. certainly England, as I was surprised recently how hard it was to find 'real' beer in the north and Scotland which still seemed stuck circa 1975 with Tetleys and John Smith's.

    One of England's delights is the trip to almost any provincial town and seeing what the local beer is like.
    Though that is changing too. I was in a pub in Oxford on the solstice and they had six or seven cask beers from six different breweries and counties, and as guest beers, if you went back a week later they'd have six or seven different ones. Served in straight side glasses or a jug if you wanted, with little or no froth or bubbles, at room or cellar temperature, out of the barrel or via the syphon (?) beer engine.
    I don't get this head business on beer... why drink CO2 or nitrogen in Guinness's case with whatever they put in it to make it cling to the glass? Beer. Barley, hops and yeast that's eaten the sugars and shat alcohol.

    But having said all that, I don't rate drinking English ale in 40C, nor any of the excelente ice-cold Portuguese 6% lagers in London when its sleeting. When in Rome etc...
    I used to , in good ex-pat fashion, bring back here Marmite and Colmans mustard and Cumberland sausages, and bloaters, but not anymore.

    It makes the pleasure of having them on home turf so much more excquisite.
    I agree with much of what you said here. My favourite places for beer drinking are in England, especially Cambridge, where we lived for a couple of years and have revisited a few times, rural Cheshire where I have family, Lingfield in Surrey, where we also lived for a couple of years, and Oxford which I used to visit a lot on work related trips. Wonderful pubs in all those places. There are some great pubs in Scotland, but you need local knowledge because there are quite a lot of rubbish ones too.

    Currently my favourite Scottish pub is the Clachnaharry Inn, which is at the Moray Firth end of the Caledonian Canal. They always have good craft beers, and I have had Spitfire, Abbot and Speckled Hen there the last few visits. Ma Cameron's in Aberdeen and the Thunderton in Elgin are also pretty good.
    Somewhere between Murder and Suicide, there is a place called Merseyside.

  11. #81
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    There was sign behind the bar in a pub in Chiswick that said...' you must be the tenth person tonight who's asked if we have any real ale.....I'm sorry there's just no demand for it..'

    A Fuller's house I think, maybe Youngs....wha'ever ... either is an excellent brewery.
    'C'est la vie' say the old folks it goes to show you never can tell

  12. #82
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by jonboy View Post
    I was surprised recently how hard it was to find 'real' beer in the north and Scotland which still seemed stuck circa 1975 with Tetleys and John Smith's.
    Either that was a couple of decades ago or you did not look very hard.
    I live in the North (west) and have no trouble at all finding craft brewery's, there is even one in the workshop next to my sons joinery shop.
    I've not been to Scotland recently, but I do know that the Caledonian Brewery and McEwans brand brew excellent beer, even if it is not "craft".
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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  13. #83
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    On my occasional trips back to the Uk I am of course limited by time and circumstance, and so I could not 'look very hard' ... But I was between Glasgow and Dumfries for a week and found nowhere that had good beer by my standards and it wasn't twenty years ago. I resorted to quality bottled european lagers on most occasions because there simply wasn't a palatable alternative.

    My point is you can wander into almost any pub in the midlands , east Anglia and the south, the west country, and London and the beer is there. no searching , no get out the Good Beer Guide. just there. Scotland and apart from a couple of places in the Lakes it was a struggle. I'm sure its there but when you just want a pint and you are offered heavy or some other muck. No thanks
    'C'est la vie' say the old folks it goes to show you never can tell

  14. #84
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by Peerie Maa View Post
    Where's Bluey.
    We should thank him for starting a great thread.
    Fun thread, certainly. But it seems the ever altruistic OP is so busy fretting over poverty and pub violence in Glasgow that he has quite forgotten that other question -

    Are you at all disconcerted by the poverty, violence and grossly unequal death rates in your own country?
    Hardly a surprise, I suppose.

    "Mozart is the heart's touchstone" (Edwin Fischer)

  15. #85
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by jonboy View Post
    On my occasional trips back to the Uk I am of course limited by time and circumstance, and so I could not 'look very hard' ... But I was between Glasgow and Dumfries for a week and found nowhere that had good beer by my standards and it wasn't twenty years ago. I resorted to quality bottled european lagers on most occasions because there simply wasn't a palatable alternative.

    My point is you can wander into almost any pub in the midlands , east Anglia and the south, the west country, and London and the beer is there. no searching , no get out the Good Beer Guide. just there. Scotland and apart from a couple of places in the Lakes it was a struggle. I'm sure its there but when you just want a pint and you are offered heavy or some other muck. No thanks
    I agree, heavy is an acquired taste, but Caledonia Deuchars is good, an there are other acceptable pints.
    If you can't spend time searching for a real ale bar, the Wetherspoon franchise is always reliable.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by jonboy View Post
    When I thought all was lost, along came CAMRA, allegedly one of the few pressure groups who considered disbanding because they had achieved their stated aim of getting real traditional beer back into virtually every pub in the UK. certainly England, as I was surprised recently how hard it was to find 'real' beer in the north and Scotland which still seemed stuck circa 1975 with Tetleys and John Smith's.
    .
    Curiously, my brother in law won the CAMRA - Best Beer title with his "Bitter and Twisted".

    There are good beers in Scotland if you're prepared to look.
    Someday, I'm going to settle down and be a grumpy old man.

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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by downthecreek View Post
    Fun thread, certainly. But it seems the ever altruistic OP is so busy fretting over poverty and pub violence in Glasgow that he has quite forgotten that other question -



    Hardly a surprise, I suppose.

    Neither pub violence nor violence in America were subjects contemplated by the OP. Those concepts were introduced by others.

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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by Sky Blue View Post
    Neither pub violence nor violence in America were subjects contemplated by the OP. Those concepts were introduced by others.
    Wassup, your memory going? You did not raise it in the OP, but you did raise it didn't you.
    Quote Originally Posted by Sky Blue View Post
    In 2010, it was found that approximately 450 persons per month were slashed with broken pint glasses in Britain.

    The problem was particularly acute in Scotland, but no one seems to know why.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by Peerie Maa View Post
    Wassup, your memory going? You did not raise it in the OP, but you did raise it didn't you.
    And was "disconcerted" by further information on the subject Out comes the stock response......

    But, as always, the ever evasive SB finds fault finding with other nations (particularly the UK) much more comfortable than any "contemplation" () of his own, brutal and deeply flawed society.

    So, SB, care to have a bash at answering the question? (No? to quote the excellent Glen - I figgered!)

    Despicable. Buy me a pint? I don't think so. I prefer to spend my time with people with a modicum of wisdom and integrity.
    Last edited by downthecreek; 01-12-2018 at 04:04 AM.
    "Mozart is the heart's touchstone" (Edwin Fischer)

  20. #90
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Here's an idea. Never, ever, venture into a Glasgow pub without personal protection in the form of a frozen black pudding (which should be easily obtainable in that fair city)

    On the Radio 4 news today - a Scottish butcher accidentally locked in his own walk-in freezer - battered his way out with the aid of - you guessed it - a frozen black pudding. Put your hands together for the glorious black pudding! A delicious morsel and a powerful weapon all in one - what's not to like?
    "Mozart is the heart's touchstone" (Edwin Fischer)

  21. #91
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by downthecreek View Post
    Here's an idea. Never, ever, venture into a Glasgow pub without personal protection in the form of a frozen black pudding (which should be easily obtainable in that fair city)

    On the Radio 4 news today - a Scottish butcher accidentally locked in his own walk-in freezer - battered his way out with the aid of - you guessed it - a frozen black pudding. Put your hands together for the glorious black pudding! A delicious morsel and a powerful weapon all in one - what's not to like?
    He obviously spent time in the north of England and got a black belt in Ecky Thump.

    Somewhere between Murder and Suicide, there is a place called Merseyside.

  22. #92
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    And this is the butcher, with one of the puddens.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by downthecreek View Post
    And was "disconcerted" by further information on the subject Out comes the stock response......

    But, as always, the ever evasive SB finds fault finding with other nations (particularly the UK) much more comfortable than any "contemplation" () of his own, brutal and deeply flawed society.

    So, SB, care to have a bash at answering the question? (No? to quote the excellent Glen - I figgered!)

    Despicable. Buy me a pint? I don't think so. I prefer to spend my time with people with a modicum of wisdom and integrity.
    The OP is a thread about the crown stamp, and more obliquely, Brexit. To the best of my knowledge, there is not a similar broken glass assault problem in America, but even if there was, this thread is not about that issue.

    We don't need to share a pint if you think I lack integrity because I don't criticise my own nation while criticizing other nations. I've not noticed you or any of the other Brits here subscribing to this same arbitrarily imposed "rule," but no matter.
    Last edited by Sky Blue; 01-12-2018 at 09:51 AM.

  24. #94
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by Sky Blue View Post
    The OP is a thread about the crown stamp, and more obliquely, Brexit. To the best of my knowledge, there is not a similar broken glass assault problem in America, but even if there was, this thread is not about that issue.
    Nah. In the US, they don't trust people with glasses, so they get bar bottles - that's the method of injury.
    "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails."
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  25. #95
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    SB: I am deeply suspicious of the figures you quoted for the numbers of beer glass assaults in Scotland.
    Source, please?

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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by birlinn View Post
    SB: I am deeply suspicious of the figures you quoted for the numbers of beer glass assaults in Scotland.
    Source, please?
    You will need to do you own research in order to quell your own suspicions, birlinn. Or you can simply choose to disbelieve the assertion, if that is easier and feels better.

  27. #97
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by Sky Blue View Post
    You will need to do you own research in order to quell your own suspicions, birlinn. Or you can simply choose to disbelieve the assertion, if that is easier and feels better.
    I just did. Nothing came up. There was one report covering England and Wales, but not Scotland.
    It really is quite difficult to build an ugly wooden boat.

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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by birlinn View Post
    SB: I am deeply suspicious of the figures you quoted for the numbers of beer glass assaults in Scotland.
    Source, please?
    We should all be aware that SB will never support the baseless claims made here. Just innuendo without fact.
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by Peerie Maa View Post
    I just did. Nothing came up. There was one report covering England and Wales, but not Scotland.
    Oh. I guess birlinn's suspicions are confirmed then. There are no beer glass assaults in Scotland then.

    You guys are funny.

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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Man up, Blooie. Support your assertions with references and/or links. Otherwise, you are what we perceive you to be - an eminently dismissible provocateur.
    Hope for the best, but plan for the worst.

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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by Sky Blue View Post
    Oh. I guess birlinn's suspicions are confirmed then. There are no beer glass assaults in Scotland then.
    When you can't even defend your own assertions with a source...
    "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails."
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  32. #102
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by Canoez View Post
    Nah. In the US, they don't trust people with glasses, so they get bar bottles - that's the method of injury.
    Hence the invention of the aluminum beer bottle. Disarm the drunks but let them conceal carry. Go figger.


    The best statement I've seen from this latest carnage came from a student who lived through it -

    "My generation will not allow this to continue!"

    Remember voting age is 18. Read it and weep reds.

  33. #103
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by mmd View Post
    Man up, Blooie. Support your assertions with references and/or links. Otherwise, you are what we perceive you to be - an eminently dismissible provocateur.
    +1

    Remarkable.
    "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails."
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  34. #104
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Otherwise, you are what we perceive you to be - an eminently dismissible provocateur.
    Well... ok, that too.
    The best statement I've seen from this latest carnage came from a student who lived through it -

    "My generation will not allow this to continue!"

    Remember voting age is 18. Read it and weep reds.

  35. #105
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    Default Re: Restore Your Britishness

    Quote Originally Posted by John of Phoenix View Post
    Hence the invention of the aluminum beer bottle. Disarm the drunks but let them conceal carry. Go figger.


    Well, that and they're lighter to ship reducing costs. Recycling costs are less, too.

    Ever see the sharp edge of one of those when they're opened up?
    "The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails."
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