April 8, 2006

not knot not knot


Well, the Spinto Band is in Nottingham England right now. We almost thought we would not make it after forgetting our keyboard and being on the receiving end of a flat tire after only five miles of driving. Needless to say, it was a busy morning and we considered these incidents, ‘life lessons.’ One might think, “Wowzer, two life lessons in one day! Stop it Spinto Band you are killing me by making a bamboo shoot grow up through my body!” (note: Joey says you can hear bamboo grow). But wait, we had another life lesson!

On the highway to Nottingham we passed a little vehicle filled with scruffy young kids with guitars. “How crazy this is,” we all though, “There are other rock groups driving around, and all this time we thought it was only us!” Anyhow, we had a debate about how to communicate with these visitors. Some of us thought that we should use mathematics because it is sort of a universal language, others thought we should send them a wood carving with a series of earth symbols in order to make contact. While we all grumbled like the House of Commons, Jon decided to take matters into his own hands. Jon grinned ear to ear and brashly displayed a double peace sign to the fellow travelers. But wait, all is not as it seems! You see, Jon had the back of his hand facing the intended recipients of the peace sign and Thomas quickly pointed out that such a gesture is often considered to be analogous to the classic middle finger. Yikes! Is this true? Who knows!? But the other travelers were not very nice after this incident. They pointed at us a lot and then stuck pictures of naked ladies up in their car window. Oh brother, talk about road rage.

Well all that is in the past and we are in Nottingham with cheese and pickle sandwiches and the comforting knowledge that Charles Babbage once existed.

Goodnight everybody,


P.S.- While killing time here in Nottingham I put a penny on the trolley tracks. After a trolley rolled over the penny, it was flattened into an oval shape. I will treasure it and fondly refer to it as my “Nottingham Penny.”

1 comment:

stacey said...

Oh no! Not the two-fingered salute!
WORSE than the middle finger in these parts, I'm afraid. And with a rather colourful origin. Shall I share? Sure, why not! Y'all seem interested in culture and history and random fun facts! And what's more fun than the origin of insulting symbols eh? An often-repeated legend has it that it originates from around the time of the Hundred Years' War. According to the legend, the sign comes from a French threat to amputate the distinctive calloused bow fingers of captured Welsh archers, as without those fingers they would be unable to draw their bows. Likewise the Welsh might have used it themselves as a gesture of provocation (i.e. "Watch out - I've still got my fingers!"). Oh yeah. Insulting allright!
As for the British penchant for pre-packaged sandwhiches... sadly, it will likely be your on-the-go dining fare throughout the trip. Yuck. May I suggest that you visit Gregg's sandwich shops, easily spotted by their distinctive baby blue and white signs? They have good homemade sandwiches (in sub rolls, too, not just gross old Wonder bread!) for CHEAP. Mmmmmm.
And when you cross the Border, you must try the beverage Irn Bru. It's orange, it's sticky, it's sickly sweet... in Glasgow it actually outsells Coke - the only place in the world where Coke is NOT king, I am told. If you're lucky, I may just show up next Saturday with some in tow. If you need any further cultural insights from a fellow displaced American or a tour of some of the city's hidden treasures (such as the charity shop where Mr. Murdoch donates his old trousers... ooooooooooh!) give me a shout. Otherwise, enjoy!