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(I know, I know, but it's the way we diarylanders have done it for generations.)



2010-11-14 21:13


Pepernoten are small sweet and spiced biscuits ("cookies") that are the traditional accompaniment to the Sinterklaas season here.

Except that the things labelled as "pepernoten" in the shops aren't what you want: what you want are actually labelled "kruidnoten" on the packets.

As a bonus, some Native will be sure to point out this discrepancy to the foreigner, generally implying that the printed label is right and everyone else is wrong, presumably because it is printed and they are not.

In these circumstances one should retort "Ja, maar in de volksmond heten ze gewoon pepernoten", with precisely enough weariness of tone to suggest that you have been through this often enough with some of the most meticulous pedants the Dutch scientific community has to offer.

(Sinterklaas arrived in the country on Saterday. We missed the TV coverage, but Boris van 't Blad put his shoe in the hall, chanted the ritual incantation "Sinterklaas bonne bonne", and woke up to find a toy car in it, and our Varied Reader surely can't ask for firmer proof than that, not least because there isn't any.)

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