• The Tenuous Purpose

    This Blog is built - not, as some might expect, on a flimsy whim but on a strong and single minded principle.

    That principle concerns Biscuits and their position in the world.

    We are really very keen on biscuits.
    As are many of you out there.
    We think.

    We wish to create an archive of Arrowroot, a backlog of Bourbons and a catalogue of Chocolate Fingers. Anybody can contribute an entry - or dispute somebody else's - provided they are not dull.
    Even Americans who perhaps don't really have the heritage of biscuitry that we are fortunate to have here.

    Or maybe they do and we are unaware of the full glory of the cookie.

    We realise that this whole subject is admirably and concisely dealt with by that excellent and unbeatable website A Nice Cup of Tea and a Sit Down. Our feeble efforts will be as the kicking of a gadfly in the face of their wisdom and experience but we hope that we may have a small contribution to make.

  • Biscuit Encounters on Twitter

  • The Synod of Biscuitry

    James Alexander-Sinclair of Blackpitts
    Gardener, Blogger, Journalist, Lecturer etc, etc. Much of his life is spent loafing around other people’s gardens issuing directives and generally cluttering up the place. However, like the great Mr Kipling, he does (occasionally) make exceptionally good gardens. (Although even Mr Kipling messed up a bit with the Carrot and Walnut Mini Classics.)

    Mark Diacono of Otter Farm
    He does sterling work growing many inappropriate plants in Devon. He dedicates a great deal of time and effort nurturing a plethora of plants that are (mostly) totally unsuited to our climate. His is a life of such extreme eccentric dedication that to start a Blog about Biscuits seems perfectly normal. He treads gently in the footsteps of people like the great William Buckland,a professor of Geology who claimed that he could tell location by tasting the local topsoil.

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Fiona’s Biscuits

Fiona has a biscuit fetish.  She has a family barrel on the dresser in the kitchen and a secret backup supply in the larder.  The family know that she has a secret supply and she knows that they know so she moves it around frequently.  What they don’t know is that she has yet another supply hidden in the drawer of her bed.

Of course, she likes the taste of biscuits.  Who doesn’t?  But it’s more of a filing system than anything.  You see, she’s been losing her memory over the last few years and she’s noticed how easy it is to lose touch with one’s friends.  So she started a journal, making notes about all the people she knows.  The first section is the most important and is entitled ‘Fiona’s Friends’:

The Rich Tea

Friend number 1 I’ve know for many years.  I’m slightly in awe of her.  She’s always, always been slim, immaculately turned out and never peaky even on morning afters or in the post-baby phase.  She is the most reliable person I know.

Custard Cream

Friend number 2 is busty, warm, overflowing with laughter and passion.  I don’t want her to lose weight because she’s just so luscious as she is.  She is life itself.


Friend number 3 is interesting, sensitive and sophisticated even.  I am sure that I shock her each time we meet.  She is feminine and fragile.  To be honest, I’m always slightly worried that one day she’ll go off.  I’m not sure that we’re terribly well suited.  The first time I saw her, I was scared but actually we always get a long great.  Thinking about it but sometimes opposites attract, don’t they?

Jammy Dodger

Friend number 4 feeds my soul and reminds me what it is to be me.  Both of us have appalling memories and laugh at the same things; the scrapes we’ve got into and out of.  Repeatedly.  I think I’m actually a watered down version of her.  It’s like coming home.


Friend number 5 takes me back to my childhood.  Her accent embodies good taste, reminds me of my family and mince and tatties.  She exudes class and earthiness simultaneously.  Firm but kind, accepting, challenging, intuitive.

There are two advantages to Fiona’s system.  She can actually taste the metaphor of each biscuit variety to remind her of the individual friends’ qualities.  Or, if they really annoy her, she can whip one off the plate in front of them and bite them in half savagely.

At Christmas time, she doesn’t send cards any more, claiming that it’s too taxing for her.  Instead, she sends them a variety box of biscuits.  She imagines them eating each other.

Kathryn Harriss

5 Responses

  1. How interesting!

    A fantastic post.


  2. I need to make more friends in order that I may award a favourite biscuit to them all. At the moment I run out of friends long before I run out of biscuits.

  3. great post…I definitely have a Boaster of a friend, he’s quite stout, the idea of spending time with him’s great and for a while hes brilliant company, but veruy quickly enough is enough. You’ve got me thinking now…time for a bath and tos ee if i can find their biscuit alter ego.

  4. This has made me think of a new strand – perhaps we could also have some biscuit based horoscopes?

    What do you think – is it a goer? It’s about time I gave Madame Zelda something to do, she’s not stirred from her sherry induced slumbers since the new year…

  5. Thanks for the positive comments. The funny thing is that I’ve been writing another short story this week and I just can’t get biscuits out of my head. I’m worried that everything I write will now be biscuit-based. Yesterday, I bought a bumper-sized pack from the supermarket consisting of eleven different varieties. We didn’t even need any biscuits. What’s happening to me? Maybe I’ll have to give in and just write this biscuit thing out of my system. Watch out for the sequel!

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