Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Pancake Day: You can't be too careful

A reader draws my attention to a story in the Harborough Mail:

The potential perils of pancake-making in the kitchen have been highlighted by Leicestershire Fire Service.

Its safety advice was issued yesterday (Monday) in a press release ahead of Shrove Tuesday today.

The release stated that the service "would like everyone to enjoy the day safely" before pointing out that in the last year, fire-fighters have attended 284 kitchen-related incidents across the county.

Does rural south Leicestershire have a particular problem with kitchen fires on Shrove Tuesday?

No. As the same reader explains, this story is probably the result of what is known in the PR trade as a "Swiss cheese" press release. It will have been issued by the home office to all fire brigades so they can fill in the holes with local names and send it to the local media.

Yet, you will be relieved to learn, there is no evidence of a spate of accidents on Shrove Tuesday (as opposed to, say, Bonfire Night) - in Market Harborough or anywhere else.

My own view is that if you manage to set fire to the pan while making pancakes then the rest of the family should bar you from the kitchen. Or as Tony Hancock put it:
"I thought my mother was a bad cook, but at least her gravy moved around the plate."

1 comment:

Jock Coats said...

Doesn't sound quite right to me...surely a "Swiss Cheese" press release would be for "Fondue Friday" rather than "Shrove Tuesday"?