The Boffin and I Get Favorite Treats Courtesy of the Continent.

The fine shop of KD Market in Wheeling, IL can be a lifeline when we want a taste of what we had in the UK despite it being a Polish grocery store.  Considering that quite a few candy favorites are made on the Continent, it should not be a surprise that we would find what we would need.  Also, we have a large number of immigrants from Poland and other Slavic nations in the Chicagoland area, so importing these products at lower prices from these places instead of the UK is a basic economic supply and demand factor.

Now, what kind of stuff can I get?  For example, to confuse those not familiar with these candy differences…

The Mars bar in Europe is like an American Milky Way only it blows up a little in your mouth like shaving cream.


But a Milky Way is closer to a Three Musketeers.


And a Bounty bar, which I have mentioned before on this blog, is supposed to be like a Mounds, but a Mounds is closer to chocolate-covered sawdust. I was not going to dip sawdust for the purposes of a photo.  Notice I bought the dark chocolate one for The Boffin because I am a Nice Wife ™.


Of course, I had to indulge in some Toblerone because they had the snowtop kind. We were still working on the holiday bar, but I had to do it.


Yes, that is a phrenologist’s head in the background wearing The Boffin’s yarmulkes.  That’s how we roll.

Chocolate bars weren’t my only purchase. I also found some biscuits, but not just any biscuits…McVitie’s Chocolate Digestives.  Fist pump!


They are made in the UK for the German market.  The question is…are they the “most loved British biscuits”?  How much truth is in this advertising?  McVitie’s probably corners the market, but how loved is the chocolate digestive compared to the custard cream?  How do you rate that kind of love?  Does one love one child more than the other?

Some of you, don’t answer that.

Nevertheless, when I said the store had the dark chocolate ones, The Boffin got all sulky that I didn’t buy those even though I presented him with a dark chocolate Bounty.  He’ll live.  I promise.

Moving on, I remember there was a palaver about not being able to bring Kinder Surprise or Kinder eggs to the United States through customs.  Kinder Surprise or Kinder eggs are (a layer of milk with a layer of white) chocolate covered plastic eggs with small toys inside that you have to assemble.  From what I understand, they are still on the banned list, as far as the U.S. is concerned.

Now, I just want to disprove the notion that we are not against giving our children candy and toys in egg-shaped containers on which they can choke.  I present as evidence the Gold Standard in lollipop, Chupa Chups.  In my opinion, Chupa Chups are the Jelly Bellies of the lolly world.  Anyway, notice there is a booklet attached.  It is basically says in just about every single language used in Europe, “This candy has a toy.  Not suitable for under 3-year-olds.  Your sprog could choke or inhale said toy.  Don’t leave your kid alone with this, dumbass!”


And I have seen other chocolate eggs in the ethnic markets here, just not Kinders, so I do not know what is going on there.  Regardless, here is the suction cup monster from my egg.  I think he’s cute.  I’m calling him Donny.  He can hang out with my rubber chicken.

U.S. Ambassador to the U.K.: Why Not Me?

I have started a new blog to indulge my political animal. I promise I will keep This British-American Life for the fun stuff. Feel free to come over and tell me what you think of my first post.

Our Special Relationship

Dear President-Elect Trump,

I would like to submit my application for the position of Ambassador of the United States to the Court of St. James’s. I am sure unsolicited inquiries through blog posts are rather unusual for positions such as this, but proposing governmental policy through social media is the new norm, so I am sure you can grant me a little leeway in this endeavor.

So my qualifications…well, the successful 15-year partnership that is my marriage to a British national. I have gotten him to see the error of his ways with his spelling.  He appreciates baseball and wears khakis with polo shirts. In fact, he came over here legally, obtained his citizenship, and works in the petro-chem industry.  Those three factors alone should please you. Just try to ignore his work on technology to improve the environment, please. That is certainly no reflection on me.

Secondly, my family ancestry is…

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Mazel Tov, Mr. Dylan!

I procured the latest edition of the Jewish United Fund of Metropolitan Chicago’s news magazine at our temple when I picked up The Sprog from Hebrew school. Of course, this tidbit of information is not the most timely, but I love how its caption was basically my reaction almost verbatim.


I wonder if any of his relatives gave him a good quality pen for his endeavors.

I Get My Own Back.

Now the conversation leading up to this had absolutely nothing to do with the state of the Queen’s bowels.  It started off with discussing Prince Harry bringing Meghan Markle to meet his family and having to apologize for embarrassing relatives.  If The Boffin can hit the lowest common denominator, we will.

Me:  I can say the Queen shits her pants.

The Boffin:  That’s treasonous!

Me:  Not my country.  I can say what I want about the Queen.

The Boffin:  The Queen can make others shit their pants.

Me: I’m not a citizen. The Queen can’t do shit to me.

The Boffin:  She could make me a lord and then you would have to say, “Oh yes, my Lord, whatever you want!”

Me:  No I won’t.


Me:  But I would be a lady.  A lady outranks a lord. (Smirk)

The Boffin:  How does a lord outrank a lady?!

Me:  Because ladies first.

Lady Flora Hastings, a victim of Queen Victoria’s cattiness.  Her death bit Queen Victoria’s image in the tuchus.

A Veteran’s Perspective of the President-Elect

I have taken a few days to really gather my thoughts over the outcome of Tuesday night. Given that the polls were saying that The Donald had a 35% chance of winning, and I had the experience of the Brexit result under my belt, the pit of my stomach told me what was going to happen. The Boffin was not shocked either.  Not that I was going to do the watusi over a Hillary win either, but my point is not to do a post-election analysis.

As I stated in my other posts, I was in Air Force just when President George H.W. Bush was finishing his term and at the beginning of President Bill Clinton’s run. We are talking 1992 to 1996. Over those years, militarily, we were still maintaining operations in the Desert. We were also committed to missions in Somalia, Bosnia, Kosovo, and other fun places like that. Meanwhile, through bipartisan efforts between the executive and legislative branches, the powers that be slashed the defense budget, and we were expected to do more with less.

I am going to concentrate on President Clinton, since most of my time was under him. Needless to say, I was not a big fan of Bubba. Not many of my colleagues were. Quite a few hated his guts. Long deployments away from your loved ones can do that to a person. However, we understood something.

He was our President and our Commander-in-Chief, and all of us who joined the military took vows to uphold the Constitution. Upholding the Constitution is a huge responsibility and is something that we put above nursing personal likes and dislikes.

Now I have been thinking that Donald Trump is an unctuous pig since his emergence in spotlight in 1980s. But regardless of how I feel about him, he was fairly elected. It’s a done deal.

But guess what? President-elect Trump has a vow to take too.

“I do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will faithfully execute the Office of President of the United States, and will to the best of my ability, preserve, protect and defend the Constitution of the United States.”

And we, the people, have to give him that chance to succeed. And we have systems in place to hold him accountable, if he breaks that vow.  Washington has its problems, but there are plenty of things about our government that still work.  

Meanwhile, we have to be the change that we want.

Happy Veterans’ Day to all who served on this side of the Pond, especially a shout out to my new Senator-elect Tammy Duckworth.


In many other nations, remember those who gave the ultimate sacrifice.


Career Advice from The Boffin

I mentioned this in a private Facebook post, but I should share this publicly.  The Boffin admitted that the reason why he became a chemical engineer was so he could legally commit arson.  Heck, his master’s thesis centered on combustion.  So channeling criminal impulses into societal good is a great way of making a career choice.

Case in point, this is The Boffin's current wallpaper on his work laptop. It is the Orbital ATK Antares Launch that went awry back in 2014. Photo courtesy of NASA HQ.
Case in point, this is The Boffin’s current wallpaper on his work laptop. It is the Orbital ATK Antares Launch that went awry back in 2014. Photo courtesy of NASA HQ.

Why they don’t mention these things at career fairs, I will never know…