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Josco's Photo Josco 31 May 2005

VileBody, on May 31 2005, 03:39 PM, said:

I always thought the quote was "incest and Morris-dancing"

Could be wrong tho - it has happened...
Oops, wrong again!
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VileBody's Photo VileBody 31 May 2005

josco, on May 31 2005, 03:01 PM, said:

VileBody, on May 31 2005, 03:39 PM, said:

I always thought the quote was "incest and Morris-dancing"

Could be wrong tho - it has happened...
Oops, wrong again!
It appears to be disputed with attributions of the "Morris-dancing" version to Malcolm Sargeant, Noel Coward, Thomas Beecham and even Stephen Fry. On balance though and in the face of the evidence offered at the bottom of the following terrifying site, I think you're right :

A morris-dancing webpage....
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Magere Hein's Photo Magere Hein 31 May 2005

josco, on May 31 2005, 04:34 PM, said:

Never?
Never. Neither the shops nor what is sold as food there seem edible.

I admit to drinking their coffee once. Has anyone tried the packaging?

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What about a BurgerKing?
Nope

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Or Pizza?
If you mean the abomination that calls itself deceptively "Pizza Hut", that's another no.

I prefer food to cardboard or greasy sawdust innabun.

regards,
Hein
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Josco's Photo Josco 31 May 2005

I do agree that it expensive for what is really just 'cheese on toast', but when the need arises it can be satisfying.
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Guest_IYG_* 31 May 2005

Magere Hein, on May 31 2005, 03:36 PM, said:

I prefer food to cardboard or greasy sawdust innabun.
Then you have obviously not experienced one of life's greatest inventions.

I'll get back to you when I figure out what it is. :D
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Dr Strangelove's Photo Dr Strangelove 01 Jun 2005

Magere Hein, on May 31 2005, 01:50 PM, said:

Notapotato, on May 31 2005, 02:45 PM, said:

That in a perfect world, but a couple of centuries ago some Americans wanted to be demonstratively different to the British for some reason, so they started holding their cutlery differently and messing around with a perfectly good language, a thing which caught on very quickly and can lead to disagreement among the less tolerant on both sides.
One wonders why the US didn't go metric after 1790.

regards,
Hein
Probably because most of their trade was still with Britain. In 1790 metric was still being debated by the French Academy of Sciences.
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BrunoBrimley's Photo BrunoBrimley 01 Jun 2005

Magere Hein, on May 31 2005, 01:50 PM, said:

One wonders why the US didn't go metric after 1790.

regards,
Hein
We tried, really we did. From the earliest school days to the latest displays in the General Store (almost a Mercantile but not quite), we have been handed metric. Even our rulers are metric on one side or t'other. During the first week of school metric was always given to us in our daily lesson plan. In the more advanced years (high school) it became part of the regular science curriculum whereas in junior high (a.k.a. middle school/intermediate school) it had been a part of the mathematics. Then in the late 1970's to early 1980's products in stores started appearing with metric listings. Although sodee pop (Pepsi, Dr.Pepper, Royal Crown Cola, Dr. Brown's Celry, Hire's, Luchesse Red Flood, Fanta, Etc. ) are sold in liter, 2 liter or 3 liter the oddity then occurs. Buy a bottle of this carbonated sugar water under a liter in size and it is sold as '16 fluid ounces' or '20 fluid ounces'. Milk on the other hand is sold by pint, quart, half gallon, gallon. Completely non-metric. Weights of products are usually done in ounces and pounds which is how it should be. Distances are in miles except in races where it varies from one to another (10K races or 5 mile runs--depends upon the race sponsor).

It never will catch on completely here and why should it? After all we have a perfectly valid and functional system in place and unlike certain backwards sorts, we drive on the RIGHT side of the road (and I don't just mean right, I also mean right, as in the correct side) and if we've got the driving thing done right then we know our measurement system must be correct as well.
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Josco's Photo Josco 01 Jun 2005

BrunoBrimley, on Jun 1 2005, 02:58 PM, said:

We tried, really we did. From the earliest school days to the latest displays in the General Store (almost a Mercantile but not quite), we have been handed metric. Even our rulers are metric on one side or t'other. During the first week of school metric was always given to us in our daily lesson plan. In the more advanced years (high school) it became part of the regular science curriculum whereas in junior high (a.k.a. middle school/intermediate school) it had been a part of the mathematics. Then in the late 1970's to early 1980's products in stores started appearing with metric listings. Although sodee pop (Pepsi, Dr.Pepper, Royal Crown Cola, Dr. Brown's Celry, Hire's, Luchesse Red Flood, Fanta, Etc. ) are sold in liter, 2 liter or 3 liter the oddity then occurs. Buy a bottle of this carbonated sugar water under a liter in size and it is sold as '16 fluid ounces' or '20 fluid ounces'. Milk on the other hand is sold by pint, quart, half gallon, gallon. Completely non-metric. Weights of products are usually done in ounces and pounds which is how it should be. Distances are in miles except in races where it varies from one to another (10K races or 5 mile runs--depends upon the race sponsor).

It never will catch on completely here and why should it? After all we have a perfectly valid and functional system in place and unlike certain backwards sorts, we drive on the RIGHT side of the road (and I don't just mean right, I also mean right, as in the correct side) and if we've got the driving thing done right then we know our measurement system must be correct as well.
I agree with most of what you say, it makes perfect sense to me. Just that ghastly incorrect spelling of litre hits me between the eyes. Arghhhhh.
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The Yeti's Photo The Yeti 01 Jun 2005

BrunoBrimley, on Jun 1 2005, 02:58 PM, said:

It never will catch on completely here and why should it? After all we have a perfectly valid and functional system in place and unlike certain backwards sorts, ...
Just be thankful that you aren't part of the European (Dis)Union.

They've banned pounds & ounces for weighing stuff here.
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Dr Strangelove's Photo Dr Strangelove 01 Jun 2005

BrunoBrimley, on Jun 1 2005, 01:58 PM, said:

Magere Hein, on May 31 2005, 01:50 PM, said:

One wonders why the US didn't go metric after 1790.

regards,
Hein
We tried, really we did. From the earliest school days to the latest displays in the General Store (almost a Mercantile but not quite), we have been handed metric. Even our rulers are metric on one side or t'other. During the first week of school metric was always given to us in our daily lesson plan. In the more advanced years (high school) it became part of the regular science curriculum whereas in junior high (a.k.a. middle school/intermediate school) it had been a part of the mathematics.
I guess I was lucky, not only did I get taught to use Metric at school. But far more importantly I was never taught in Imperial measures (except miles of course)
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football_fan's Photo football_fan 01 Jun 2005

guesty, on Jun 1 2005, 12:00 PM, said:

BrunoBrimley, on Jun 1 2005, 01:58 PM, said:

Magere Hein, on May 31 2005, 01:50 PM, said:

One wonders why the US didn't go metric after 1790.

regards,
Hein
We tried, really we did. From the earliest school days to the latest displays in the General Store (almost a Mercantile but not quite), we have been handed metric. Even our rulers are metric on one side or t'other. During the first week of school metric was always given to us in our daily lesson plan. In the more advanced years (high school) it became part of the regular science curriculum whereas in junior high (a.k.a. middle school/intermediate school) it had been a part of the mathematics.
I guess I was lucky, not only did I get taught to use Metric at school. But far more importantly I was never taught in Imperial measures (except miles of course)
I had the benefit of being taught both, but just as I got used to the Imperial measurements, the metric system was implemented. :D
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lospalmas7's Photo lospalmas7 01 Jun 2005

The Yeti, on Jun 1 2005, 05:00 PM, said:

Just be thankful that you aren't part of the European (Dis)Union.

They've banned pounds & ounces for weighing stuff here.
Have you been reading the Daily Mail?! :D

Euromyths @ www.cec.org.uk/press/myths/ said:

Fact:

Metrication in the UK is not the result of British membership of the EU. In 1965, eight years before joining the EEC, the Wilson Government decided to initiate the UK's metrication programme, in response to global moves in this direction Ireland and all Commonwealth countries had already adopted the metric system. The transition has been a gradual one but, for almost three decades now, children in British schools have enjoyed a metric-only education.

Metric units of measurement are now used for most transactions regulated by the Weights and Measures Act 1985. From 1 January 2000, goods sold loose by weight (mainly fresh foods) are required to be sold in grams and kilograms. It is not a criminal offence to sell goods in imperial. Traders are allowed to display weights and prices in both imperial and metric but not in imperial only. Consumers can continue to express the quantity they wish to buy in pounds and ounces. The directive was agreed by the UK Government of the day and the implementing legislation was approved by Parliament in Westminster.
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Cowboy Ronnie's Photo Cowboy Ronnie 01 Jun 2005

hmmm, not sure what any of this has to do with the Death List, other than we may be in danger of boring each other to death with some of these threads. But hell, no one interesting's gone for ages, so I'll jump in the metric-imperial debate.

One of the big problems I have with the metric system is that for some things (temperature and body weight being the first two that leap to mind), the extra precision the imperial system provides is of merit. I don't want to know if it's 25 degrees centigrade, I want to know if it's 76, 77 or 78 degrees farenheit. Same thing on weight - 120 pounds is more precise than 50 kilos. I would also argue that for temperature, most of us are just interested in how warm or cool we are (rather than trying to achieve Absolute Zero in our fridge-freezers), which is why the 0 - 100 range that the Earth's temperature typically falls into in the imperial system is more appropriate than the narrow 0-37 metric range. Same with human body temperature, where again 100 degrees seems a pretty good maximum. Distances are pretty much a wash, although kilometers do of course click by 60% faster than miles.

But this only goes so far - the Brits' insistence in hanging in there using "stone" as a unit of measurement never ceases to amaze me (it's almost as perplexing as the continued use of "public school" to refer to a school which is, in fact, private.) For those who don't know, a stone is equal to 14 pounds, so everyone goes around saying so and so weighs "eleven stone" or "eleven stone ten". I'm then left to frantically try to multiply 14 by some almost equally large number, then add on the remainder. Wouldn't it just be a lot simpler to say 156 pounds?

As for the EU, as a dumb American may I just say the amount of scrambling around and hand-wringing by the French (who I thought came up with the idea of a united Europe in the first place) the past three days has been highly entertaining. I'm surprised they don't just all go on strike. Not that anyone would notice. To solve the EU crisis I say just leave things as they are, right now, although I am hanging on to some of the old Deutschmarks, francs and lira in my desk drawer that I'd previously written off as worthless (I mean, since the introduction of the Euro, the franc and lira were worthless long before that)
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Magere Hein's Photo Magere Hein 01 Jun 2005

Oh my, did I open a can of worms... :o

Since our list candidates are in no hurry to feed those invertebrates, a bit of topic drift is not a bad thing to keep things lively in this forum.

A few comments:

- The Celcius/Fahrenheit temperature scales are not formally part of the metric system, Kelvin is. I prefer the Celcius scale, mostly because I'm used to it, but there is one nice bit to setting the zero mark at the freezing point of water: negative outside temperatures are automatically connected with snow and ice. Not that we have much of that over here. :D

- It seems to me that there's little practical difference in expressing body weight in kg or pounds. Using stone is silly. A question like "Anyone for half a litre?" doesn't have the ring of the traditional one, though.

- I thought British resistance to the metric system was based on their loathing of all things French and revolutionary. A bit of reading on the web taught me differently. The UK has been on the way to metrication since 1965, but the first steps were taken in 1862. See this DTI web page for more information.

- There is no mandatory system of weights and measures for the United States. I'm confident the US will eventually go metric, but I doubt I'll live to see it completed. See this U of NC web page for this bit of history and this NIST web page.

- It's rather silly to argue that one system of measures is better than the other. Of course the metric system is easier to learn and more rational, but it seems to me that for both the UK and the USA those are good reasons to resist it. :D

regards,
Hein
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The Yeti's Photo The Yeti 02 Jun 2005

Magere Hein, on Jun 1 2005, 07:30 PM, said:

- The Celcius/Fahrenheit temperature scales are not formally part of the metric system, Kelvin is. I prefer the Celcius scale, mostly because I'm used to it, but there is one nice bit to setting the zero mark at the freezing point of water:
Technically the zero point for Celcius is the triple point of water, which is almost, but not quite, the same as the freezing point of water.

:D :D
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The Yeti's Photo The Yeti 02 Jun 2005

Cowboy Ronnie, on Jun 1 2005, 06:05 PM, said:

But this only goes so far - the Brits' insistence in hanging in there using "stone" as a unit of measurement never ceases to amaze me. For those who don't know, a stone is equal to 14 pounds, so everyone goes around saying so and so weighs "eleven stone" or "eleven stone ten". I'm then left to frantically try to multiply 14 by some almost equally large number, then add on the remainder. Wouldn't it just be a lot simpler to say 156 pounds?
Nup.

'Cos I, for one, can never remember how many pounds there are in a stone. And dividing by 14 is a nightmare.

Much easier to multiply. Weighing someone in pounds is meaningless to me !

But I do know there are 2.2 lbs to the kilogram.

:D
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Magere Hein's Photo Magere Hein 02 Jun 2005

The Yeti, on Jun 2 2005, 05:12 PM, said:

Technically the zero point for Celcius is the triple point of water, which is almost, but not quite, the same as the freezing point of water.

:D  :D
More technically, it isn't. The triple point of water is at 0.01 C and 611.73 pascal pressure.

pedantically yours,
Hein
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honez's Photo honez 03 Jun 2005

The Yeti, on Jun 3 2005, 01:19 AM, said:

Cowboy Ronnie, on Jun 1 2005, 06:05 PM, said:

But this only goes so far - the Brits' insistence in hanging in there using "stone" as a unit of measurement never ceases to amaze me. For those who don't know, a stone is equal to 14 pounds, so everyone goes around saying so and so weighs "eleven stone" or "eleven stone ten". I'm then left to frantically try to multiply 14 by some almost equally large number, then add on the remainder. Wouldn't it just be a lot simpler to say 156 pounds?
Nup.
'Cos I, for one, can never remember how many pounds there are in a stone. And dividing by 14 is a nightmare.
Much easier to multiply. Weighing someone in pounds is meaningless to me !
But I do know there are 2.2 lbs to the kilogram.
It's the same thing as weights get bigger too... A Rhino would tips the scales at 3,000 lbs in the USA and 3 tons in the UK.

I note that the Yanks dispense with this "let's just use one unit for everything" approach when talking about length (or height). Someone who's 6'2", is the same on both sides of the Atlantic, not 74" tall.

(And at Subway you can order a Foot-long, but asking for a 12-incher would just get sniggers all around) B)
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Captain Oates's Photo Captain Oates 03 Jun 2005

honez, on Jun 3 2005, 11:02 AM, said:

It's the same thing as weights get bigger too... A Rhino would tips the scales at 3,000 lbs in the USA and 3 tons in the UK. 

I think your rhino has been grossly over-fed in transit! B)
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Tuber Mirum's Photo Tuber Mirum 03 Jun 2005

honez, on Jun 3 2005, 12:02 PM, said:

A Rhino would tip the scales at 3,000 lbs in the USA and 3 tons in the UK.
By my reckoning 3 tons in the UK would be 6,720 lbs in the US.

But I must confess to being not particularly widely-travelled, so I can't support my claim with the benefit of any actual personal experience. My knowledge of both physics and zoology is also pretty limited.
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