Friday, 31 January 2020

Things that are possibly even more absurd than Brexit!

I am a great fan of coffee. We drink quite a lot of it in our house. I have been called a coffee snob in my time because I don’t have instant coffee in the house. Well, there is no point in buying instant coffee when neither Phil nor I appreciate it. Neither do we like the plunger-type filter coffee makers. And we have not become aficionados of the coffee-pod machines. I did once buy us a a very fancy espresso machine, complete with milk frother but to be quite honest it was more bother than it was worth. Instead we rely on the Italian style coffee maker, the one that comes in three parts: a bottom section where you put the water, kind of basket where you put the ground coffee and through which the boiled water forces its way into the top section, from which you pour an excellent cup of coffee. 

My Spanish sister gave us one I don’t know how long ago. I suspected at the time that she got it free, or at least on a special offer, with Bonka coffee but we really appreciated it - the best Christmas present she ever gave us! The irony of it is that she never made anything but instant coffee (and still doesn’t) despite her husband really appreciating good coffee!

Anyway, I was reading about the Tate galleries advertising for a “head of coffee”. There’s a silly job title if ever there was one. Do they also have a “head of ice cream”? A” head of cakes”? This was news mostly because the post apparently pays more than the average museum or gallery curator receives per annum.

As you might expect such a job advert waxes lyrical. “The advert tells candidates the role “encompasses all aspects of coffee” within the four Tate galleries and requires them to have “extensive experience of cupping and espresso quality assessment”, while experience of developing blends for espresso and filter coffee is a must.”

What on earth is “cupping”? I must ask my eldest granddaughter. Before getting a proper job, she worked part time for a while at a local branch of Java and prided herself on being able to make one of those fancy leaf patterns on the top of a caffe latte! Perhaps she also learnt about “cupping”.

I love the flowery language used to describe such things as coffee houses. Here we go:- “Tate Britain houses the Roastery at Tate, described on its website as “a diverse and innovative specialty coffee space” that is home to the company’s Gender Equality Coffee Project and Slot Roasting Collective, “a vibrant community-led non-profit business that helps fund Tate Gallery and champion coffee producers and professionals of all genders throughout the coffee value chain”.
The head of coffee role requires blending and roasting coffee for use in all Tate Eats’ sites and managing the hot beverage team, while being responsible for “all aspects of tea and coffee”, and managing a slot-roasting programme, plus wholesale and white label contracts.”

The mind boggles!

But coffee is important, or so they would have us believe. “Research from the British Coffee Association found that the UK coffee industry’s total contribution to the UK economy was £17.7bn in 2017, and that the sector creates about 210,325 British jobs.”

There you go.

Now for another absurdity. Counter-terror police issued guidance requiring teachers to report members of Extinction Rebellion to the authorities under the Prevent powers. The guide was recalled after the Guardian revealed its existence, but later another list emerged citing the group, as well as Greenpeace and Stop the Badger Cull.

But the nonsense does not stop there.

A cycling safety and advocacy organisation has been named on a counter-terrorism watch list issued by the Home Office. Critical Mass was named among a collection of 'Left Wing and Associated Single Issue Groups' that were included in a document issued to counter-terrorism police units.

It seem that we are all potential terrorists now!

Be careful what you protest about!

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