The Brunching Shuttlecocks Reader Mail

Reader Mail (3 February 2003)

From: The Lad
Subject: grapes and chairs at holidays

Hey, just writing to let you know that my family did the grapes and chairs thing at New Years. Its a spanish/south american catholic custom (usually.. some white people do it too, I think). Sparking white wines are also involved, along with new shirts and something we call "a countdown", which pretty involved and I don't want to get into it here. I don't really understand how all these things go together myself, but maybe you'll come up with something on your own. Good luck with that.

I didn't want to revisit the grape/chair issue, but I'm trying to figure out how a New Year's countdown becomes complicated. Seems pretty straightforward to me. Start with ten, subtract one, keep it up until you hear gunshots. Do you do it in hexadecimal or something?

From: Emma Driver
Subject: Coinage, great and small

Nice work on the 'quarters' ratings. While we here in Australia don't have quarters, we've got more lame coinage than you can poke a stick at. And the lamest ones win awards. A spot of research (god knows why) reveals that in 2001 the 'international minting community' awarded an Australian coin which commemorated a British royal visit 'Coin of the Year'.

What a privilege!

Apparently this coin was so good because, in addition to its exceedingly inventive image of a piece of our Parliament House's scaffolding, Australian flag and -- get this for an original representation of royalty -- a royal crown, it also included a never before seen image of the Queen of England ... which looks exactly the same as all the other images of the Queen of England on all the rest of our goddamn coinage!

Australian Coin: Obverse Australian Coin: Reverse

Aw, it's not that bad. I like the pointy bits around the edges, it looks like it'd make a good oyster scoop in a pinch. And the scaffolding/flag combo looks like something from a strategy-based computer game, especially with the "50" below which obviously indicates the additional resource points you get by capturing that particular fort. I don't know if it deserves an award, but I haven't seen the competition, either. Maybe the other coins all had wheat on them or something.

From: Chiggie Flip
Subject: Texas quarter...


When they come out with the Texas quarter I think that you should rate it A+.

You and all Texans worth their oversized belt buckles.

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