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British Expat Newsletter:
17 September 2008

Hello, and welcome to those who have joined up since our last newsletter.

In this issue

  • This week: Oldies
  • Virtual Snacks
  • Bizarre Searches
  • Quotation and joke

This week

Well, it’s been a few weeks since we sent out our “weekly” email newsletter but these days the clock hands move faster than we do. Meanwhile I hit the half-century. No cake with candles, thank goodness. I wouldn’t have the puff.

Dave subscribes to Private Eye magazine, which is very amusing at times, and I get an Australian foodie magazine. I’m not so keen on typical “Woman’s Interest” publications these days as I’ve no interest whatsoever in fashion, beauty, the angst of raising kids, and all the usual subjects therein. I fancied trying The Oldie magazine (after all, it’s edited by Richard Ingrams who edited the Eye for more than twenty years). In their words, “The aim was to produce an antidote to youth culture but, more importantly, a magazine with emphasis on good writing, humour and quality illustration.” I had high hopes!

Partly I was hoping for a good read and I did have a faint hope that I might even be able to get something published in there. We pestered Dave’s brother to send a copy, which he did (eventually). Thanks, Terry! I was very excited to receive this and was already burbling on to Dave how I thought I’d probably like to subscribe…

Big disappointment! I thought it would be full of interesting stuff for the more “mature” reader. If life begins at 40 then you’re just approaching your teens at 50, having fun at 60, and really starting to enjoy life at 70. I’d expected a celebration of wit and wisdom. Instead it was like a big wrinkly rock festival. Rock, in this sense meaning devoid of fun, movement, inspiration, or anything more than an inanimate lump. Instead of taking the attitude I’d expected of it, it was all about being “old”. Sure, I did expect the odd advert for Thora Hird-type stair lifts and the like, but articles about how confusing it is to put your pants on, interviews with people just because they’re old – rather than interesting – and some rather boring cartoons, just left me feeling completely let down.

I think the concept of The Oldie is a great one but they perhaps should’ve taken a leaf out of Jenny Joseph’s book (see the Virtual Snacks below). When I’m old I’ll wear purple! And if I have any problems getting my pants on, I won’t expect to get paid for writing about it.

Do you have anything to say about this topic? Or do you have some suggestions for other issues we might discuss in our weekly email? Why not comment and tell us?

Virtual Snacks

Just a few suggestions if you have a little time to spare:

Here’s a link to the Oldie website – judge for yourselves!

And here’s some information about Jenny Joseph and her poem “Warning” – the one which begins “When I am an old woman I shall wear purple”.

Bizarre Searches

Some strange search terms which have led people to visit British Expat recently:

  • charlies water features
  • tidy up effectively
  • turkey drunk death
  • silver birch roots feet
  • british what are they look like life style
  • hairy forum
  • information on weird insects
  • cartoon peering over wall
  • no soured cream
  • cost of giving birth to a hospital in canada

Till next time…
Happy surfing!

Kay & Dave
Editor & Deputy Editor
British Expat Magazine

Quotation

“At my age I do what Mark Twain did. I get my daily paper, look at the obituaries page and if I’m not there I carry on as usual.”

Sir Patrick Moore, astronomer and broadcaster (1923- )

Joke

A young man is walking through a supermarket to pick up a few things when he notices an old lady following him around and staring at him. Thinking nothing of it, he ignores her and carries on shopping. But a couple of minutes later in another aisle, he notices that she’s still doing it.

Finally, just as he’s joining the queue for the till, she darts in front of him with her trolley.

“Pardon me,” she says, “I’m sorry if my staring at you has made you feel uncomfortable. It’s just that you look just like my son, who died six months ago.”

“I’m very sorry,” replies the young man, “is there anything I can do for you?”

“As a matter of fact, there is,” she says. “As I’m leaving, can you say ‘See you later, Mum!’? It would make me feel so much better.”

“Sure,” answers the young man. As the old woman leaves with her groceries, he calls out, “See you later, Mum!” and watches her leave with a warm glow of a good deed done.

As he turns back to the till, he’s shocked to see that it’s displaying a total of £127.50. “That can’t be right!” he protests. “I only bought a few things!”

“Your mother said that you would pay for her,” says the checkout assistant.

PG Author: Kay McMahon

Kay has been an expat for nearly 30 years. She set up the British Expat website back in early 2000, whilst living in London and missing the expat life. These days she spends much of her time lugging computers and cameras around the world. (Dave gets to deal with all the really heavy stuff.)

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