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Lisap369  (Level: 61.1 - Posts: 992)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 8:47 AM


"the immortal memory is a passionate speech about burns life and which is hopefully funny too"

This puzzle had me clicking letters like a mad woman - 'and which is' didn't sound like correct grammar to me - I could be wrong, it just didn't sound right to me.

Gypsylady  (Level: 148.2 - Posts: 6097)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 8:56 AM

I had no idea what "Burns Supper" was about, but didn't do too bad considering.


Smoke20  (Level: 62.6 - Posts: 2815)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 8:59 AM

Glad I didn't get that one! But I did get at least one with words wedged in that it didn't need, one with a triple redundency. Three of my lost moves were from submitting with a missing word. I knew the word was there, so it's entirely my fault, but imo the sentence was better without it.

Oh well, I'm grateful to have had one on the topic. Having actually been to Burns Suppers, it was a nice reminder.

Hey editors! Tartan Day is April 6th!

Suzer22  (Level: 165.6 - Posts: 1982)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 8:59 AM

"is hopefully funny" looks like the awkwardness culprit to me!

I used a lot of letters too, but kept most of my points ("major" was the word that took away my points). Intriguing topic, but I still don't know what a Burns supper is. Why is it called a Burns supper? Was Burns a person? Why are we eating his supper? From the haggis and bagpipe references I can only conclude it is something Scottish. Is it something the Scots do/celebrate on Feb 12? Why would they celebrate Abraham Lincoln's Birthday like that?

Smoke20  (Level: 62.6 - Posts: 2815)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 9:08 AM

Suze, it's a celebration of Robert Burns (as you probably know), that's celebrated by Scots and other Burns enthusiasts all over the world. It began as a memorial dinner after his death but eventually got moved to his birthday. The Freemasons and other groups host them every year. I bet if you watch the newspapers, there will be one near you. The menu must include cockaleekie (potato and leek soup), haggis (oatmeal, minced organ meats and spices boiled in a sheep's stomach--yum), potatoes, turnips, and WHISKY.

Suzer22  (Level: 165.6 - Posts: 1982)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 9:11 AM

Seriously, I have never heard of this before. Imagine people all over the world celebrating a Scottish poet! I am flabbergasted! Thanks, Smoke, for the info.

Smoke20  (Level: 62.6 - Posts: 2815)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 9:20 AM

People with Scottish heritage are extraordinarily proud of it, and of Burns. The fact that he wrote mostly in Scots makes him a challenge for the English-speaker, but there are diamonds among the neeps and tatties. Here's one that's often sung mournfully at suppers:

Parcel O' Rogues

Fareweel tae all oor Scottish fame
Fareweel oor ancient glory
Fareweel even tae oor Scottish name
Sae famed in martial story
Now Sark runs tae the Solway sand
Tweed runs tae the ocean
To mark where England's province stand
Such a parcel of rogues in a nation

What force or guile could ne'er subdue
Through many warlike ages
Is wrought now by a coward few
For hireling traitor's wages
The English steel we could disdain
Secure in valour's station
But English gold has been oor bane
Such a parcel of rogues in a nation

Oh would that ere I saw the day
That treason thus should sell us
My auld grey heid was laid in clay
Wi' Bruce and loyal Wallace
But pith an' power tae my last hour
I'll mak' this declaration
We're bought and sold for English gold
Such a parcel of rogues in a nation

Eesusbejesus  (Level: 75.0 - Posts: 3641)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 9:24 AM

We try to go to our local Burns dinner every year but don't always make it. We like to take the kids too so they will appreciate their Scottish heritage.

(Bruce clan)

Smoke20  (Level: 62.6 - Posts: 2815)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 9:29 AM

That's wonderful, Lodi! So tell me, do the wee tikes love their haggis?

Eesusbejesus  (Level: 75.0 - Posts: 3641)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 9:33 AM

They will eat it but they sure don't sit around going "gee mom, we sure are craving some haggis tonight." hahaha

I'm hoping to get Connor in bagpipe lessons soon. He started them once but his hands were too little.

Lisap369  (Level: 61.1 - Posts: 992)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 9:34 AM

Ah Smoke.. I was thinking of you all the way through - knew you'd love this one!.. and by the time I finished, it took me a while to scroll to the top of the list (lol - I finished pretty poorly) and there you were - at the top! Good on ya

Kaufman  (Level: 267.7 - Posts: 3941)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 9:42 AM

Suzer, to me Burns Supper was a description of what happened when I cooked. But according to one of the puzzles I got, January 25 is the traditional date for such a fest.

Smoke20  (Level: 62.6 - Posts: 2815)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 10:04 AM

Start him out with a chanter kit, Lodi. That was the recommendation from my piper friend. I have one I got from a website and it's lots of fun trying to get anything out of it that sounds like music instead of cows.

Eesusbejesus  (Level: 75.0 - Posts: 3641)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 10:07 AM

Way ahead of you there Smoke - he's on his second chanter. And a set of child-size bagpipes in the Bruce plaid.

Smoke20  (Level: 62.6 - Posts: 2815)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 10:17 AM

Way cool! That so rocks!

So you know what I mean about the cow.

Surreyman  (Level: 272.2 - Posts: 2771)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 11:00 AM

For those who might be interested, here's a good site giving the basics of Burns Suppers.

I organise one each year for our local Round Table - even though I'm Welsh and they're all English - not a Scot in sight!

Smoke20  (Level: 62.6 - Posts: 2815)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 12:02 PM

You should see one done by yanks!

Ye'd be larfin' an' fallin' aboot.

Bigbird  (Level: 249.1 - Posts: 3337)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 12:09 PM

Loved that puzzle. Knew nothing about Burns Suppers, but now I feel ready to host one. So, who is bringing the haggis???


Surreyman  (Level: 272.2 - Posts: 2771)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 12:10 PM

We do keep very much to formalities - no ladies (sorry!), black tie or Highland dress and do most of the stuff in that guide.

As a matter of interest, how do you desecrate it?

Cypressriver  (Level: 59.9 - Posts: 160)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 2:23 PM

Suzer, (I think it was you who asked)

Burns is one of the greatest poets ever! If you look him up you'll find poems you didn't know you knew. "My love is like a red, red rose/That's newly bloomed in spring" is one of his. And "To a wee mousie."

I'm a Scot too. Orignal name was McGillispick, now shortened to Gillespie. McPherson clan. But I don't much fancy haggis. I went to a Scottish ball once, for the St. Andrew's Society of Montreal, and my, the men were handsome in their kilts and get-ups. Pipers and reels and a traditional meal for a selected few (I was accidentally-without knowing it-the debutante of the ball, so I got the full treatment. For full story, see my quiz about embarrassing myself in front of celebrities.) Anyway, the trick for me was to drown the haggis in red wine before eating it.

The worst poet ever also came from Scotland. McGonagal. In fact, I'm planning a quiz about him.

Here's to Robert Burns and Scotland!

Geophile  (Level: 167.2 - Posts: 1544)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 2:42 PM

Aye, to Rrrrrrobbie Burrrrns!

Smoke20  (Level: 62.6 - Posts: 2815)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 2:57 PM

I love McGonagall! The two on the Tay Bridge before and after being blown down are priceless (if somewhat artless) windows into that time and place. What a character he was! I look forward to your quiz, so please message me when it appears!

I've had haggis cooked for me by a Perthshire butcher who made it himself, and I've had it in restaurants in Edinburgh and Inverness. I've even had it from a can! I still remember how surprised I was my first time to find it delicious. Haggis gets bad press; must be the sheep's stomach. These days for most commercial haggis intestine is used as with sausages. You can make a lot of haggis from a sheep, but it's only got the one stomach. I like to take a cold cooked haggis from the fridge, slice it thin and fry it crispy for breakfast with eggs and toast. Similar to scrapple and far better to my taste than black pudding, which I cannot get past my teeth for the life of me.

Garrybl  (Level: 291.5 - Posts: 6770)
Tue, 13th Feb '07 6:47 PM

I resisted the temptation to post about the setter's grammar because I thought it was an excellent theme for a puzzle (any one that I do well on by definition is excellent) .

But there were actually 2/3 of the five that were -- how shall I say it -- infelicitously expressed. Though I've had problems with WP themes before and actually enjoyed this theme, it is the first time I've ever noticed what I would consider less than perfect English.

Maybe it is the scots influence; or the whisky?


Surreyman  (Level: 272.2 - Posts: 2771)
Wed, 14th Feb '07 5:01 AM

So maybe the author was from the USA?

Aslan  (Level: 27.6 - Posts: 356)
Wed, 14th Feb '07 8:02 AM

Thanks for the education Smokes!

I lived in Edinburgh for a summer when I was 19 and got to explore clear up to Brora. Scotland is an amazingly beautiful country and my thoughts go there often for a rest.

Uncleresa  (Level: 71.3 - Posts: 132)
Thu, 15th Feb '07 2:51 AM


Mskillian  (Level: 65.1 - Posts: 226)
Thu, 15th Feb '07 7:49 AM

Och! Mousie thou are no thy lane, in proving foresight may be vain, the best laid schemes o' mice and men....

I've always loved that section....cause you know what they say about the best laid plans of mice and men.

And to the dear hero, Robbie Burns....och, his words make this Yoda's heart melt.

(Clan Logan and Clan Munro)

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