unknown unknowns

26 Sep

london

i am at the library, on another lovely warm day, and read in the times newspaper that sainsburys will stop offering a refund if what u bought fromthem is more expensive than the similar thing in tesco.

you have to buy more than £10 worth of stuff from sainsburys before the till will find out for you what is more expensive than tesco and give you a voucher of refund.

since i never buy anythng more than £10 at any one time, it is no use to me.

all i can see when i view the prices in sainsburys is the upfront cost and so many of their stuff is more costly than tesco. simple things like milk powder, basic instant coffee, basic spaghetti, etc, even basic bread… oats… practically everything really so much so that i stopped going to sainsburys.

i used to wonder when i was there how come it is so busy with people, when it is obviously more expensive than tesco, and i used to wonder how come i never hear of sainsburys profits being hit , like we hear so much about tesco’s falling profits and market share.

so now i know why. people rely on the refund that the computer will find out for them; maybe not realising that  sainsburys have upped their price knowing that only those who shop for small amounts will pay the increased costs and those customers are not really to be wooed anyway as they buy so little.

now according to today’s news article they say they will stopp the refunds.

so maybe people are realising it is better to go straight to the cheap supermarkets like lidl, aldi, rather than fluff around with buying more expensive stuff and getting a refund back, in vouchers what’s more that means coming back to the store to redeem it and only if u buy more of those higher priced stuff. that might explain why sainsburys is dropping that scheme.

Another unknown unknown i discovered is my cistern in my wc. sometimes it does not flush, because the water does not rush in to fill that gadget which house the plunger .

so i tend to leave it for a bit, and it soon fills up with water. this time something new happened. i can feel the inside of that gadget that cause the flush is full, but the water does not drain down to the bowl. i tried it a few times but it still did not work. so i press hard on the top of the gadget and whatever it did, it made the thing worked. well well, some unknown unknowns i have dislodged there. 

my problem with the washing machine double check valve may be solved. simon managed to fit one all by himself. the water engineer came yesterday to check it and signed it off.

he was the one who recommended this to be fitted to overcome the slight contamination of my water.

my initial suggestion that i disconnect the washing machine and not use it luckily is not needed now. i admit it is nice to be able to use the washing machine.

i guess it is nice to live with other people, who can take the trouble to fix it rather than live on my own where i would take the path of least resistence where it can lead to a bit of inconvenience. i would highly recommend living with others. 

from midday today there is a malaysian food festival in trafalgar square. it is to promote malaysia and malaysian foods sponsored by the malaysian govt. i shall go most probably just to see what is going on.

added later. well i have just been to trafalgar square and bought some malaysian foodstuff from the malaysiakitchen stall. 1kg frozen fish balls £5.50. dried instant noodles pack of 10 , 40mg each for .50p.each pack.  i bought 2packs. and then there is the 3 for £2 malaysian chili sauce.  i was not going to buy them but there was a guy there with samples to taste and i just happen to ask him what is the difference between them and he said one got garlic, the other got ginger, and another is sweet. well that kicked me into buying the garlic and ginger ones. as i must have bought the suger ones last year as it was so sweet and i was put off buying them again . so just goes to show u have to have someone tell you what it is different about them.

the frozen fish balls are really good value. they did not sell them last year.  normally 200mg cost about £2 fresh in the chinese shop in chinatown. these are about half price. i cant imagine how ordinary people will buy them as the fish balls will thaw out by the time they go home. i live nearby so i can go home and put them in the freezer and still be able to get back to trafalgar square later today if i want to. who knows maybe they will reduce everything as the evening approaches and they close shop. haha. they even have frozen roti chenai £1.50 for 6. i did not buy them as i dont know what to do with them or if they taste the same after thawing. i am quite attracted to roti done this way and i see roti king who i hear do quite authentic roti blatha. and was quite tempted to try them. it costs £5 though.

some western guys were buying it, but only the roti, no sauce. i said aren’t you supposed to eat that with curry sauce? one of them said yes, but you can chose how to eat it. i must say even though the customer is king… and we are all supposed to accept it;  but really how are u to get the real experience of eating roti blatha if u dont combine it with the curry sauce?? it is just not the malaysian way.

i glanced at the staff in the stall and i can see the guys in the stall kind of having a glazed look in their face. i guess they have learnt never to correct the english customers. haha. just let them do whatever they like.

i have noticed that about all this ethnic food being sold in uk, esp in london. they mix and match and just adulterate and add stuff that u dont associate with that dish.

that is why i am not surprised if one day an indian restaurant would serve curry and chips… if one had not allready done so. i can understand why some italian restaurants lament at how the british diner will add stuff to the pasta sauces and call it bolognaise, or puttanesce, which in the country of origin would never agree to it.  

I call myself a malaysian but even i am confused with the various names for the roti. i know it as roti blatha, but i have heard it called roti chenai, prata. are they mean all the same thing except for dialect difference?

added. 7pm. i went there again at about 5pm. i cooked a noodle dish with the fish balls and noodles and it was very nice. i bought another of those noodles at 50p after i chatted with a malaysian student who said he was here only 8days having just arrived to do his university degree which will take him 3yrs. he pays £100 a week for a room share with another student. i told him about the noodles as it is quite ideal. i told him he can use a stock cube to get the flavour. and then add whatever he wants like mince beef, or frozen cheap fish, or fish balls, veg etc. and that is a meal allready. he bought 3 packs. 

and i got the address of their shop. it is quite a long way away. chuang lee unit 4 meridientrading estate,28 lombard wal4l, london se7 7sw. nearest station is charlton station. or go to greenwich station and take bus472 or 486towards thamesmead centre and get off at peninsular park road. i think it is too far for me to go considering i only buy a few items. i will just have to wait next year when they come again to trafalgar square. 

I also got to see a chef doing a masterclass of roti chennai making. the dough was already prepared so we dont get to know how it is done. i guess we shall have to buy his cook book, but he demonstrated how to toss it. and then it is fried . alot of oil used. video  

Anyway afterwards i asked him why is there so many names for it? he said roti prata (or blatha) is a singapore invention. the original name is roti chennai, (or they spell it cennai,) from a place in india.

the spelling is all over the place, it is also spelt roti paratha, roti canai.

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added.13.10.14 i just read in the metro newspaper today that chennai was formerly known as madras. so the name roti chennai must be new, i think roti prata, blatha, paratha, must be the original name. i know it as roti blatha, a corruption of prata and paratha i think. i wonder whether it exists in madras anymore. if it does maybe they call it a diffrent name.

added again. 14.10.14 found this …(from wikipedia)

‘Changes to the local name of cities in the indigenous languages is less common. However, a change in English may also be a reflection of changes in other Indian languages other than the specific local one. For example the change of Madras (Hindi मद्रास Madras) to Chennai (Hindi चेन्नई Chennai) was reflected in many of India’s languages, as well incidentally in English, while the Tamil endonym Chennai (சென்னை Chennai) had always been Chennai and remained unaffected by the change.’

so perhaps it is an old phrase and means ‘tamil bread’. south indians are the main people who settled in malaysia, and most south indians are tamils.

4 Responses to “unknown unknowns”

  1. Carl D'Agostino Friday September 26, 2014 at 12:38 pm #

    unknown unknowns coined by Rumsfeld Secretary of Defense for Bush I think.

    • alifesgayventure Friday September 26, 2014 at 1:01 pm #

      hi carl, yes it came widely to the world’s attention when rumsfeld used the phrase. at the time, i recall, he was derided for it, even though when i read the article scoffing at him , i thought he was only summarising a very old buddhist/philosophical concept. it just shows up the people who scorned him for using that phrase.

  2. Sarah M Friday September 26, 2014 at 3:09 pm #

    Curry and chips has been popular in Essex for years. I had a boyfriend who thought it the height of sophistication. Note past tense.

  3. alifesgayventure Friday September 26, 2014 at 3:19 pm #

    haha. maybe we are seeing the invention of a new culinary dish. curry and chips and we shall be bringing it to india and it will be a sensation there . haha.
    though i really am feeling a bit unsettled (for want of a better word) that the guys are not really getting the full flavour of that roti and curry. to malaysians, the two go together and forms a very nostalgic experience for those of us who grew up in malaysia.

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