Tuesday, 25 November 2008


Survivors the drama...
If you think you are having a bad day and have become somewhat immune to all mention of the credit crunch, then in an attempt to cheer yourself up a bit, why not tune into the new drama on the beeb called Survivors.  Devoid of mortgage or loan repayments, the characters have discovered the world is their oyster, assuming of course you can find a fleet of 4 x 4's, enough petrol to enable you to gad about for a bit of unorthodoxed retail therapy, a gun and a couple of chickens.  (Footnote: I am not having a pop at the series as I think it is fab, a very well crafted script from the novel... so far)

It triggered in me an instant memory when just eight years ago I was dragged around Sainsbury's for some war shopping; following our decision to stand side by side with our buds the Americans when we followed like sheep and invaded Iraq.  Now I'm not known for my political viewpoints and I do not intend to start now, but I was whipped into a frenzy by my dear Mother who, with the thought of the last war (as in II) still firmly imprinted on her mind and a handful of useful war recipes lazered into her spleen, she wanted to be first in the queue before rationing kicked in. Armed with two trolleys I commenced loading them to order like a looter who had won a thirty minute trolley dash on the first day of a Harrods' sale.  I was pleased I could still extend my elbows so far out to keep others at bay, whilst keeping a vice like grip on each handle and loading with my feet.
I was instructed to load the likes of essential supplies that an every day domestic war goddess has lying around in her larder, like five gallon drums of water, shampoo, deodorant, soap, toothpaste, pulses, dried peas, pasta and rice, Oh and syrup sponges, flour, syrup of figs, semolina, sugar, fray bentos, spam, corned beef, meat pies in a tin, brown sauce, baked beans, tinned soups, jellies, evaporated milk, sardines, liquid paraffin and volumes of powdered egg.  £250 later along with a car load of processed food, most of which we have never eaten in our lives, I did my dutiful daughter bit by pointing out that if we survived the germ warfare and the tsunami which would be triggered by the whole nuclear shebang imploding underwater, it might just mean we could be living on our own island as the entire contents of our store cupboard re hydrated in an instant and fused to the texture of a comet; but looking on the positive side at least we would have our own food mountain.  If we armed ourselves with hand drill or hammer, we could chisel our way through for several years, assuming the sinews in our arms still had some movement left from the war shopping and hadn't been fried to the texture of elastic, or we could just give that up and lick our way to oblivion.

I had visions of spending many a night sitting around a candle, exchanging recipes of 101 things you could do with a Fray Bentos meat pie but was robbed of the pleasure when the s*** hit the fan and it was revealed that the weapons of mass destruction turned out to be a packet of dried egg left over from the last major war (as in II)...  I appreciate this is an irreverent viewpoint and my apologies to those who do in fact live under the threat of everyday war initiatives, but I hope you see my point.

Two years later when it started to become a possibility that we might outlive the shelf life of the £250 worth of black market carumba sitting on the shelves of our domestic war goddess larder, I decided to throw it all out in tact, still with the unsolved mystery on my mind of how to put powdered egg to good use and having only managed to reach number five on the list of the 101 things to do with a tin of Fray Bentos meat pie... For your benefit, in case you find yourself in the same situation, I shall list them below, but if anyone has any other innovative ideas then please feel free to add to them ready for next time.  Don't hold back.

101 things to do with a tin of Fray Bentos Meat Pie
1)   Daily exercise lifting the tin to decide how to cook it without gas or electricity and replace on the shelf for tomorrow
2)  Weekly exercise by throwing forth as a Frisbee and retrieving at speed before the other marauding neighbours know you have a tin left and place back on the shelf for tomorrow
3)  Combo of Practicality and exercise:  Using the tin like a monkey to crack open the nuts in their shells so you may ingest your daily protein, AND replace on the shelf for tomorrow
4)  Check that it is still in date and replace on the shelf for tomorrow
5)  On Sunday hold said tin over the candle to heat, until the tin becomes too hot to hold, then when cool replace on the larder shelf for... Oh who knows when

By Day five you should have shed enough weight to win slimmer of the year award (unless of course you have eaten the whole packet of powdered egg and belatedly remembered the saying 'you stuff you puff') AND you will feel secure in the knowledge that you still have nine months left on the sell by date to think of the other ninety five things to do with a tin of Fray Bentos Meat Pie.  

I shall sign off now as I have to go darn my knickers in preparation for the next apocalyptic threat to mankind.  

In the words of Ringo, love and peace, peace and love...
Foxi... xx


Kristen In London said...

Oh, Foxi Roxie, this made me laugh out LOUD! Especially the bit about the instant rehydration of all the foodstuffs you'd so lovingly acquired. Your mum would really disapprove of me: I've never eaten a powdered egg in my life. Shameful, I know. So sorry about your script. These people have no idea what they're missing!

Shall we talk reunion??

Foxi Rosie said...

On a day when I have a throbbing tooth (or should I say gap), it is so good to know I've made someone smile. My mother would be absolutely enthralled by you and of course, like everyone else, she would absolutely adore you. Probably enough to share one of her powdered egg recipes with you... I do her an injustice, she is a fabulous cook in fact, hence the astonishment over the necessity to buy so much rubbish.

Jaci contacted me re the reunion, she is itching to get going again, as are Susan, Pauline, Caro, Sam, Charlie and Adam. I'll be in touch soon.