Posted by: Dan Sprague | February 17, 2013

Brownies and Napkins

Brownies and Napkins

We had a guest for the weekend and my wife made brownies. When she served them she asked us “would anyone like a…any of these?”: and stopped before she said brownies.  She got a smile on her face, and said that down under in Australia you did not call them brownies. A brownie down under was a fart. What we call “brownines” is called a “chocolate slice” down under.

We all had a good laugh about what different areas call different things. I told about when my Dads Mother from western Canada has come to visit us down in Illinois one summer. I must have been about 7 or 8. One evening Mom asked me to set the table and when I could not find the napkins I yelled to mom “Where are the napkins?”  My Grandmother was mortified.  To her a napkin was a woman’s sanitary product! She thought I should have asked for a paper serviette. My Mom had to tell her that is what everyone  down here in the “States” called them. Gandma still thought it was crude, and we kids had to call them serviettes while she was here.

That reminded me of another story. My sister was 6 years older than I was. She was in charge of my brother and I one day and was going to make lunch for us. We were out of napkins and she gave me some money and asked me to go down to the small store a few blocks a way to get some. I was delighted to do it. I got to the store and compared the prices of all the napkins I found. I found a box that was bigger than the others at a lower price. It was a great deal. I took it to the check out. The man that was checking things out looked at the box and asked me if I was sure I wanted to buy them. I proudly said yes and that my sister, a teenager had told me to get them for her. The man smiled and checked me out. He put them in a bag for me and I told him I did not need a bag. He told me that my sister would want them in a bag, because she was a teenager. I figured he knew about those things since he was old.

When we had lunch my sister had given us paper towels as napkins and said they were better for the soup she had fixed then the ones I had gotten. It was years before I found out that I had bought sanitary napkins in the BIG BOX. 😎

Now the next time you are offered a brownie you will think of the Australian fart, and when you take a paper napkin you will think paper serviette. 😎


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