Showing posts with label Slanket. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Slanket. Show all posts

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Priceless peanuts, well oiled birds and the wattle of Edmonds.

I like to feed the birds each day, usually with wild bird seed. Normally in the winter the seed is supplemented with crushed peanuts, but not this year.
Have you seen the price of peanuts? I think there has been some sort of global peanut crisis because they are now, ounce for ounce, officially more expensive than gold, cocaine, diamonds or plutonium. It's not helping that Jimmy Yung Un in North Korea is stockpiling them to finance his nuclear shenanigans.

So this year they are still getting the bird seed, but rather then turning to crime in order to fund their peanut habit, I'm 'enriching' it with meat fat instead as I don't want to get tagged again.
I usually use the fat off the pet mince, but if I don't have any I use lard instead.
I melt a little fat in the microwave and mix it in with the seed before putting it out. Peanuts are probably better, but in these times of austerity the birds understand that they must tighten their feathery belts too.

While we're on fat, here's another fat related tip.
I quite often buy chicken portions and skin them before cooking. I used to throw away the skin but not any more. If you put the raw skins in a bowl and microwave them for a few minutes, turning occasionally, you render the fat out and are left with 'chicken scratchings' which are very tasty sprinkled with salt.
I pour the rendered chicken fat into a bowl and keep it in the fridge. It's useful for cooking savoury stuff, waterproofing your boots, repelling weasels or rubbing on your chest to keep out the cold.
Duck and goose fat are currently the 'A' listers in the world of celebrity poultry fat, with prices to match, but chicken fat or schmaltz is useful too and worth saving, given the price of cooking oil.

I don't want to boast but we are a three Slanket household.

Grace Jones having a laff round ours yesterday.

The brown Slanket is in it's natural state and has not been tampered with. Due to the design it can sometimes be a bit flappy and billowy and can cause entanglement issues.
Perplexed by this problem I came up with a remedy.
Below is a picture of my 'pimped up' Slanket. As you can see the flappy bits have been sewn together, resulting in a kind of fleecy straightjacket. It has a strange 'wattle-y' bit at the front, which Dave finds useful for storing biscuits, Scotch eggs or ale. A kind of nosebag, if you like.
Noel Edmonds, having descended from pelicans, has managed to cultivate his own splendid wattle in later life. No doubt that would fill the 'nosebag' entirely, leaving him struggling to squeeze in even a buffet sausage roll, or a sprat. I suppose he could always put it in his bumbag.

Last week, at the Golden Globes with Frank the whippet.

It's is best to wear this when you are not expecting visitors as it takes about 7 minutes to get out of.
It renders movement virtually impossible and I speak from experience when I say it's best not to answer the door while wearing it....Unless it's the Jehovah's Witnesses again, who seem to be targetting us for some reason.
What of the third Slanket? Well, being very 'on trend' I'm in the process of remodelling it into a 'Sherlock' Slanket with matching legwarmers made from old jumper arms.

I was watching SuperScrimpers on Channel 4 last night and found it quite depressing to see them beginning the programme by telling people to throw food out, 'even if it looks and smells fine' once it's past the 'use by' date. This sort of blind observance of rules is what I was going on about in my last post and really gets on my nerves. We need to learn to use our judgement and take responsibility for our decisions.
Eat some over ripe sandwich ham just once and spend all night tormented by shuddering waves of cramping pain, sweating like Lee Evans on the Sudan leg of his world tour, exploding from the bagpipes and throwing up all over the twisted shag and you'll soon learn to tell when something's gone off or not....

Admittedly there are some useful tips on this programme, and it does a good job at 'normalising' thrifty practices, but I find the whole 'Miss Moneypenny' thing a bit contrived, what with her pedalling around dressed like a Seventies pimp. It's just a bit odd that's all...I'll still watch  next week though.  

Tuesday, 13 December 2011

Snout Snugglers and Rakfisk.

I am one of those people that 'feels the cold'.
So I am sat here typing whilst wearing a vest, jumper, cardigan and body warmer, some thick trousers, a stout pair of socks, sheepskin boots and a ridiculous looking hat and if it gets any colder the Slanket is going to have to come out.  
According to the thermometer its 13C/55F, which isn't actually that cold and the heating has been on for the customary 7 minutes every single morning and evening for the last week, whether it needed to be or not.
I get cold hands and feet, but a hot water bottle sorts that out. The thing that I find difficult to deal with is that my nose gets really cold. Due to gravity, and the risk of suffocation there aren't many options available when it comes to nose warming, but I think that I may have come up with a remedy.

When I was researching last weeks blog on novelty Christmas gifts I came across the unpleasantness that is the 'Willy Warmer'. At the time I thought that it was nothing more than a useless, mildly offensive frippery but now I'm thinking that it might be the Next Big Thing in the world of optimum nasal temperature maintenance. With a minor adjustment to the design and a piece of elastic to go around the back of the head, the Snout Snuggler would make a  functional and glamorous addition to every winter wardrobe.
Well it's no more stupid than ear muffs.

This could be the money making idea that I have been looking for, so I shall crochet a prototype and post it to Duncan Bannatyne with a note offering him a 20% stake for an investment of around £60k (for wool). Hopefully he won't retaliate by threatening to break my arms or by getting funny with me if I try to cancel my gym membership.
I could also offer a Deluxe version, with a built in hanky-gusset impregnated with Vicks.

Just a temporary measure until the Snout Snuggler goes into production.

No shower this morning as by the time I'd got all my clothes off the water was cold and the heating had gone off. Is it just me that finds the thought of a shower in this weather quite repellent?
It seems that a daily shower or heaven forbid, bath, is essential within polite society these days. This is a relatively recent development that came about in the Eighties. I blame Noels House Party.

In the Seventies everyone had a designated weekly 'bath night' and it was usually a Sunday, unless you were foreign (on a different Time Zone). Even the middle classes made do with a 'strip wash'. You only have to watch a few episodes of The Good Life, Terry and June or The Fall and Rise of Reginald Perrin to work that one out.

Dave needs a shower every day for medical reasons. He has sweating issues and can quickly develop a smell redolent of Rakfisk, but I'm sure the less clammy amongst us don't need to be so rigorous with our personal hygiene.
And if Snout Snugglers take off we won't be able to smell whether someone needs a bath or not so it's a 'win win' situation all round.

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Just 9 to go....

Another shift done, just 9 to go now. I am lucky in that Dave and I have a weeks leave next week. When I return it will be for just two weeks (I only work Monday to Thursday). As I mentioned previously, my job is already being advertised (via Jobcentre website), and so far we have had over 40 requests for an application form. One mans' meat is another mans' poison.....and whoever gets the job may leave a vacancy that may appeal to me. Sometimes all you need is a change of scenery. 

In the front room, once it's dark we normally have fairy lights and the standard lamp on. We have decided to economise and just have fairy lights on (plus the TV), unless we are eating. For some reason neither of us likes eating what we cannot see (despite my having cooked it, so there aren't going to be any surprises, except the odd hair. I shed a lot.). So this evening as soon as I had finished my fish and vegetables the light went off. Then Dave decided to have yet more steak and kidney pudding (he has a high boredom threshold), and so the light went on again, but as soon as he had finished, off it went. He went on to have a slice of bread and jam, but bravely decided to eat it without the aid of a standard lamp . We have agreed to eat before it gets dark when we are off work next week.

Again no heating as although it isn't warm it isn't really cold either. So I've got four layers on again, Dave is modelling the Slanket, and the four dogs are each covered in a blanket. I enclose a picture of Dave in his Slanket (with a glass of homebrewed cider, or a "pint of Rough" as we like to call it). Please note the standard lamp is "orf".
I have no idea why his left arm is in the air.