Friday, 21 September 2007

Friday Night is Chippy Night

Why is it that Friday seems to attract more traditions than any other day of the week? Whether it's going out on the lash; 'Dress Down Day' or have a naughty day in the office day, they all seem to be on Friday.

Around our way Friday night is chippy night: at the end of a hard week nobody can be bothered cooking - but here's the thing - it's not Chinese, Indian or Pizza night; it's good old English Chippy night. So it's off to, in our case, the catchily and wittily titled Frydays (see what they did there) but not before popping into Raja's Newsagents for a copy of the Oldham Evening Chronicle to read whilst stood in the queue that stretches out of the door.

The chippy queue is a social entity. In these day's when there are few local shops and nobody walks anywhere, it's the place where you see your neighbours; or the parents of your kids mates - you catch up on whether Tom's boxing or Kimberley is pole dancing (that is true by the way and her mum will kill me if she reads this).

Queuing etiquette is important too; it's no good standing there thinking that -like in the Chinese - your fish will be ready in the warming cabinet. No, all fish, sausages, spam fritters and 1/2 chickens are cooked to order; so, be assertive when you enter and shout over the heads of your fellow queuers "Will you put us in two fish and a spam fritter please mate"; don't feel as though you are being pushy: it's what's expected.

Finally at the counter it's essential that you know who is serving you; if you get the dopey girl who is more interested in watching passing cars on the road outside, you must watch carefully as she prepares your order - like as not she'll forget to put in your small carton of peas or your curry sauce. I'm pleased to say we only have one dopey girl in our chippy; my favourite is 'memory girl' who - and I lie not - can look you in the eye as you say:
"two fish, two home-made cheese and onion pie, two lots of chips - one big, one regular, big peas, little peas and a big curry sauce please" and not pause once to check, before placing the perfectly remembered list in your Frydays carrier bag and taking your £12.50 off you.

Yes, chippy night is the perfect way to start the weekend: no washing up, no cooking.


Lisa said...

We had a chippy tea, although ours was chinese!
That's probably because our chippy has never got the hang of crispy batter!
We haven't got a decent English chippy near here, although we have plenty of very decent Chinese and Indian purveyors of tasty comestibles. If we fancy a half decent battered fish we have to drive to compo's.
I do know a mad photographer who is the fountain of all knowledge on things deep fried and fishy! Whether you are in Blackpool, Scarborough, Buxton or Wales if fish is what you are after, he's the man to ask!

Bill Blunt said...

Any scraps going? I used to love 'a bag of chips with scrapings' - the bits of batter collected by the fish-shop owner and kept warm in the corner of the range.... and served up for free!

70steen said...

Love a chippy tea, but unfortunately batter makes me throw... I am a fish cake in breadcrumbs gal with chips in gravy. You can't beat chippy gravy... oh to die for :-)

Crofty said...

Ah yes, the perfect post-beer walk home in the fresh air snack: chips and gravy!

Crofty said...

And how can we forget scaps?... we used to get scraps for taking in a pile of newspaper.

Lisa said...

You can't wrap them in newspaper now, it's unhygienic and against health and safety. {sigh}

Although I do believe there is a company who makes chippy paper with newspaper print on, using non toxic fully edible inks presumably!