The Burning Question of Our Times: Where do you keep your ketchup?

When I got married I had to relearn how to do laundry. Growing up my mother did laundry every other day or so and, unless my recollection is faulty, she dumped everything into the machine regardless of color so that’s how I learned to do it. There were exceptions for things like bedsheets and comforters that took up a lot of room on their own, but otherwise there was very little separation. The first time I tried to do this after I got married my wife looked at me like I had suddenly turned into a neanderthal. I was retrained to separate out the whites as well as to generally put darker clothes and lighter clothes into separate loads.

My point is that a lot of the stuff we learned as we grew up we just accepted as the way things are done and when we’re confronted by someone who learned it a different way it’s a bit of culture shock. Stuff that I would never think of questioning how I learned to do it ends up being a surprise when someone says that’s not how you do it.

Take for example, where you keep your ketchup (or catsup if you prefer). Apparently there’s a raging debate on the Internet right now about the appropriate place to store it when you’re not using it. Do you keep it in the fridge or the cupboard?

U.K. supermarket chain Asda (I have no idea how to pronounce that) Clapham waded into the argument with a Twitter poll:

Asda Clapham sparks fierce debate after move to stock ketchup in fridge

The supermarket tweeted: “Where do you keep your tomato ketchup? Our colleagues at Asda Clapham have joined the debate by stocking them on shelves AND in the fridge.”

Asda’s Victoria Williams told the Daily Mail: “Tomato ketchup is a staple of many of our customers weekly shop but recent debate has prompted us to trial two areas to stock our great value own brand tomato ketchup sauces, so we can end the debate once and for all and give everyone what they want.”

The final poll results are below:

I have to admit I’m surprised there’s a debate about this at all. The answer is: Both.

I mean, look at this label for Heinz’s ketchup:

Click to embiggen.

See that circled bit? It says “For best results, refrigerate after opening.” So you store it in the cupboard until you open it the first time, then it goes in the fridge. Same thing for A1 Sauce. How is this even a debate?

All that said, one thing that doesn’t go in the fridge is Maple Syrup unless it’s 100% pure a.k.a. REAL maple syrup. The “maple flavored” syrups sold under brand names like Aunt Jemima (THAT’S RACIST!) or Log Cabin even say right on the bottle they don’t need to be refrigerated after opening. Yet invariably they end up in our fridge and it ain’t me or the cats doing it. Makes pouring that stuff really fucking annoying.

In fairness I should point out that I do put my malt vinegar in the fridge after opening it even though it’s completely unnecessary. I have no idea why. I don’t remember us ever having it in the house when I was growing up so I have no precedent for this. We did have worcestershire sauce back then and we generally kept that in the fridge even though it didn’t need refrigeration either. I don’t think I’ve had worcestershire sauce in the house since I started living on my own so maybe I transferred the habit from that to my malt vinegar.

It’s a good thing I’m not the superstitious type…

… otherwise I might get a little nervous at the sight of all the crows in the trees when I leave work every day. Here’s a couple of crappy camera phone pics that don’t really do them justice:


Click to embiggen!

For some reason they always seem to gather outside in the trees about the same time every day. These shots were taken around 5:30PM as I was leaving for class. Some days there are easily close to 100 crows in those trees and they make quite the racket.

As I said before, if I were the superstitious type I might find that troubling, but my personal theory is that the operators here get a break at 6PM and quite a few of them grab complimentary snacks and then head outside for a smoke. Being your typical humans there tends to be a fair amount of junk left lying on the ground by the less considerate people working here—half eaten bags of chips, near-empty cola cans—just the sort of stuff that a bunch of crows might find worth hanging around for.

Four strands of (supposedly) George Washington’s hair fetch $17,000.

Man, I wish I had the kind of money to throw away on something as ludicrous as this:

FOXNews.com – Man Buys 4 Strands of George Washington’s Hair for $17G

LEXINGTON, Ky. —  It might not even really be George Washington’s hair — but it still sold for $17,000.

Four strands reportedly clipped from the first president were sold at auction Friday night to a Richmond man who declined to give his name.

Colorado resident Christa Allen said her father, a Philadelphia attorney, had given her the hair, which was pressed under glass in a locket and accompanied by a watch.

Allen told potential buyers that the hair had been handed down since it was clipped from Washington’s head. The Historical Society of Montgomery County, Pa., inspected Allen’s evidence and gave her its backing.

Of course I wouldn’t throw it away on stuff like that. Still I don’t know what’s more amazing: That someone spent 17G on four strands of hair or that the person selling it thought they might be able to get $75G for them.