Crazed on Wine and Tripe

John King

“IT’S GONNA BE A CRAZY MONTH!” screaming out at me in large purple letters . The claim is made by my local supermarket in the most recent of the many junk advertising catalogues or flyers that they thrust through my letterbox every week. The ritual is always the same – a rather bedraggled, lanky teenager in a hoodie, forcing voluminous e bundles of glossy paper junk into my letterbox, all the while cursing and swearing because the oversize bundles are just too big for my letterbox, so, he unfold his carefully foleded bundle and pops the catalogues and flyers in one by one.

I am wondering if I can’t sue my local supermarket for misleading advertising. The offers in the latest glossy waste of paper are no crazier than before – all the usual “buy one get one free,” though I note that if I collect enough points on my store card, then this month I can get a free set of saucepans (subject to availability) furthermore I can take part in a prize draw to win a week’s worth of shopping. However I guess I’ll just wait to the end of the month before taking any legal action, there are still 28 days left for something crazy to happen.

As for crazy French happenings in November … well, this is National Tripe Month (no joke) – the national federation of all those who produce gastronomic delicacies using those bits of the animal that I would rather not eat – have mounted a huge promotional campaign all through November to convince us all to eat more tripe.


I’m not sure if this happens in other countries. I’m not sure if people other than the French would enjoy eating calf brains or cows’ stomachs or … The worst “trip” offender has to the be “Andouillette” which translates best into English as a trip sausage. It has more than a passing resemblance to a Gentleman’s raison d’être, and when sliced open  – well I’m not sure which is worse – the smell, not unlike a stale jockstrap or the “gangly” contents that spews forth. In gore spectacle ratings, this is a bit like Alien.  If you like your tripe though, then this is the time to head for La Belle France.


Other crazy happenings – On the third Thursday in November, Beaujolais Nouveau wine (more tripe) hits the supermarket shelves – not sure that Beaujolais Nouveau actually passes for wine though – more like over sweet raspberry and banana juice with alcohol added. Every year the “bouquet” (or the nose) of the Beaujolais Nouveau is compared to red fruit or bananas. No matter, even though most serious wine drinkers say that they hate Beaujolais, they’ll still be knocking back gallons of the stuff right up until Christmas. On Thursday 21st November most bars, cafés and restaurants will be having their Soirée Beaujolais and quite a few workplaces will be organising an after hours Beaujolais bash too. (more Beaujolais thoughts nearer the time.)

Watch this space for more crazed wine soaked tripe happenings