Ask the Boffin

Photo portrait.  We got his good side.  "Cuff Hill logan stone 2" by Rosser (talk) - I created this work entirely by myself. Roger Griffith.
Photo portrait of The Boffin. We got his good side. “Cuff Hill logan stone 2” by Rosser (talk) – I created this work entirely by myself. Roger Griffith.

I am adding a new feature to the blog.  Every so often, The Boffin will answer some of your questions.  Do you want to know why he came here?  Are you curious about how Margaret Thatcher ruined his life?  He will tell you.  All you have to do is ask.

He also loves giving advice, and some of it may actually be useful.  But don’t ask me to guarantee the results.

The only way that can happen is if you submit the questions in the first place.  So how do you get a hold of him?  E-mail him at theboffin@thisbritishamericanlife.com.  You can also go to the Contact page too.

I can’t wait to see how this experiment turns out.

13 thoughts on “Ask the Boffin

    1. Oh, we don’t need The Boffin for this one. I know it off the top of my head. I know the invention of peanut butter was credited to George Washington Carver because of his numerous experiments with peanuts, but that was not the case. The first patent for peanut butter went to a Canadian named Marcellus Edson. However, it was J.H. Kellogg of cereal fame who popularized peanut butter has a health food for people who had no teeth, and American popularity grew from there.

      Considering we are the 3rd largest grower of peanuts behind China and India, it is understandable why we have taken to love peanuts and peanut butter.

      So why do the Britons love hazelnuts so much?

      Liked by 1 person

  1. WTF!!!!!!? Brilliant. And I thought it was something to do with President Carter being a peanut farmer. Bugger, now I have to think really hard for a Boffin question. What is he not strong on? …………. I’ll get back to you on the Hazelnut question…..maybe it’s something to do with Topics and ‘a hazelnut in every bite’????

    Liked by 1 person

      1. Lol. I used to be an Engineer!!! Not a very good one but an Engineer all the same. Ask Boffin if ‘Classic Engineer’ means he was really good or just old school? Promise I won’t pester you with the Boffin questions any more. I’m sure the boffin is already telling you off right now for starting this. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

        1. No, not at all. I read that you were an engineer. That is why I knew you would understand. He is an excellent chemical engineer, but he could not fit into the old apprentice system, i.e. you can’t have an idea until you are in middle management. It wasn’t until he pushed for a transfer to the United States that he could be the Boffin and innovate. (He has several patents under his belt.) So, the Boffin is part of the STEM brain drain.

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  2. Wow,…..I’m going to embarrass myself now. Ask the Boffin, ‘What’s the STEM brain drain’? I’m sure any decent Engineer should know this, chemical or other wise…but I don’t.! (that was my last question, honest!)

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    1. The Boffin isn’t home, so I have been answering all of these questions. I have been with him 16 years, so these answers are old hat.

      STEM stands for Science, Technology, Engineering, and Maths. The problem with the U.K. since it lost its manufacturing sector during the Thatcher years is that, while it still knows how to educate its young people well, it does not know how to employ them. We are not just talking about starting salaries. We are also talking about working life. The Boffin was completely hemmed in with “This is the way we have always done it” mentality, or “We can’t afford to try it your way”, or “Go away, son. You’re too junior to have an idea.” Many of the U.K.’s best and brightest in the tech sectors have been going off to Australia, Canada, New Zealand, and the U.S. to actually do the jobs they have been educated to do. The Boffin left in 1998 and has no desire to come back. He works with other Britons in his office who completely concur with him.

      Liked by 1 person

      1. Mmmm, strikes me we Brits have a serious problem. ‘Course I’ve known that for a long time. I really hope going to the U.S. Has been the best decision you and The Boffin have ever made. 😊

        Liked by 1 person

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