Why we need to give thanks to the USA

Thanksgiving,USA,America,Britain,humor,laughsOn the day when families gather all over the USA to give thanks, it’s only fitting that we here in the UK should think about the things for which we owe gratitude to our American friends. Here are some of my suggestions, and please help us out here by adding yours. Even if you’re American – tell us what we really should be grateful for. (And can we forget the Boston Tea Party once and for all please?)

Burgers
Ostensibly not from ham, but from Hamburg, although the good burghers (sorry) of modern-day Hamburg undoubtedly eat more refined and tasty meat dishes these days. Can be made out of anything from gourmet filet steak to cardboard and minced rats’ gonads, depending on which fast food outlet you choose. See below.

Burmese pythons, propagating
Conservationists and wildlife lovers who do not live in Florida’s Everglades must be delighted that the US is giving these outgrown pets a nice home where they can grow to well over 5 metres long, feast on local citizens’ dogs and cats along with various wild rodents and mammals, and give the local crocs and alligators a damned good spanking, too.

Chop Suey
Despite its oriental spelling and pronunciation, Chop Suey has never been anywhere near China and was entirely a US invention, i.e. meat, eggs, veggies and anything else you can get hold of that sounds and tastes vaguely exotic cooked up together in a thick sauce. In fairness to the allegedly culture-stealing Americans, however, Wikipedia points out the anthropologist E.N. Anderson concludes that the dish is based on tsap seui (“miscellaneous leftovers”), common in Taishan (Toisan), a district of Guangdong Province (Canton), the home of many early Chinese immigrants to the U.S.” Gotchya.

Fast Food
A few generations ago the closest thing you got to fast food in the UK was cockles and winkles at the seaside and a pack of crisps (chips) with your beer or Babycham in a pub. Now everywhere you turn in the UK and beyond there’s a gleaming, grinning gargoyle of a US-inspired fast food outlet braying at you to buy their goodies fried in unspeakable oil and stuffed with monosodium glutamate. Personally I’d prefer to stick to the cockles and crisps (but I could kill for a bacon cheeseburger with gherkins.)

Hi, how’re ya doin’?
What’s wrong with “hello, how are you?” And “I’m good, thanks.” We know you might be good, but are you well?

Hollywood
We have so much to thank Hollywood for … on-screen heroes of generations gone by … iconic movies whose charms have lasted for generations … talented directors and producers … breast implants the size of small cars… drive-thru facelifts and Botox squirts … porn and zombie flicks for all tastes and fetishes … the list is endless. It’s amazing what 365 day sunshine can do to the human brain.

Kardashians, The
They’re everywhere. And there are so many of them. They’re kompromising our kapability to think klearly which could be a katastrophe.

Meatloaf
A filthy concoction that looks like compacted dog poop stuffed into a loaf-shaped pan, baked, and served with stiff, tasteless gravy and maybe a salad if you’re lucky. For example…

Classic Meatloaf

  • 1 1/2 lbs (675 g) ground beef
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 cup (250 ml) bread crumbs
  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) ketchup
  • 2 Tbs (30 ml) Dijon mustard
  • 1/2 cup (125 ml) chopped fresh parsley
  • 1 Tbs (15 ml) fennel seed
  • 1 tsp (5 ml) dried thyme, marjoram, or oregano Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Combine all the ingredients in a mixing bowl and knead the mixture with your hands until thoroughly combined. Transfer the mixture to a 9x5x3-inch (23x13x8 cm) loaf pan or form into a loaf on a baking sheet. Bake in a preheated 350F (180C) oven until the center of the loaf reads 160F (70C) on an instant- read thermometer, about 1 to 1 1/4 hours. Drain off the excess fat and let stand for 15 minutes before cutting into slices.
Serves 4 to 6.
With thanks to Cheffie at (US based) Worldwide Recipes. (And I love to put a few chilies and some garlic in mine.)

Thanksgiving,english,american,british,writing,words,slang,jargon,translationsPizza
Originating from Naples, it’s the Italians’ answer to an open grilled sandwich. Popular in many countries, pizza’s fame was, however, almost certainly kicked off by the Americans’ enthusiasm for fast food and ability to monetize almost anything into an international squillion seller. Now you can get pizzas with any topping from the original cheese and tomato to Baltimore crab and Maine lobster. Bet the Neapolitans wish they could have cashed in on that.

Syllables (extra)
Thank you to the Americans who have created long words for when a shorter (original English) word won’t do. E.G:

  • Anesthesiologist (anaesthetist)
  • Burglarize (burgle)
  • Competency (competence)
  • Conceptualize (conceive)
  • Conversate (converse)
  • Expiration (expiry)
  • Modernistic (modern)
  • Prize drawing (prize draw)
  • Etc.

Turkeys
They are native to North America. I have seen some wild ones wandering about in my cousin’s back yard in southern Québec – erstwhile US draft dodgers, no doubt.

Twerking
It’s something that baboons have been doing for thousands of years so why now that the precocious young Miley takes it up, is it all over the media and even twerked its way into the Oxford Dictionary? Human bums are for sitting on, not jiggling around in time to rock music. In fact mine’s so big I can only twerk to The Blue Danube.

Only kidding, USA – have a great Thanksgiving!

While you’re here, don’t forget to stop by my Bookshop…books and eBooks to help you write better – and to give to friends and family (don’t forget Christmas will be here soon too!)…

And if you want a real Black Friday bargain on a mini-library of FOUR eBooks to help you write superbly for business – for the price of ONE! – click on the ad in the sidebar or right here – now – (offer ends Monday.)

photo credit: hapinachu via photopin cc

Comments

comments

Thoughts

  1. Longer words? How very German! I’m beginning to like the Americans 😉

    • Ah, but do Germans deliberately elongate original words with extraneous syllables?? 😉

      • No, and unfortunately they now often use the shorter English words 🙁

        • That’s a shame, Angelika – much as we recognize English as an international business and other language of communication, it’s sad if it’s used to dilute the culture and strength of another of our ancient languages that we so badly need to conserve.

          I know the French have tried banning Englishisms like “sandwich” and “weekend” but even they, I suspect, are finding it hard to stop English words creeping in.

  2. Do we need to go on an export drive?

Thoughts

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