It Burns!

Tonight is burns night. This, in case you are unsure, is the annual celebration of the Rabbie “The Baird” Burns and his works. The traditional food to be eaten on this occasion is haggis, neeps and tatties. Unfortunately I’m not much of a fan of my adopted nation’s national dish. Happily, there’s a vegetarian alternative available and it’s damn tasty.

Previous years have involved me working at The Edinburgh University Jewish Society’s annual Rabbi Burns Ball* and getting together with groups of friends of various sizes. This year was just a quiet one in the flat with my good lady, however. We did make the food a little fancy, however:

Picture stolen from previously mentioned good lady’s blog.

Now if you’ll excuse me I’ve just remembered that I’m also supposed to have a whisky.

* Boom boom!

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  1. #1 by Dougal Stanton on January 25, 2009 - 10:58 pm

    That would be “bard”, not baird…

  2. #2 by harveynick on January 25, 2009 - 11:33 pm

    I’ve always seen baird. This website agrees: http://www.burnspoetry.com/

  3. #3 by Dougal on January 26, 2009 - 10:36 am

    Well, I would disagree with them, and I think there is some evidence to suggest they’re making it up. For example:

    – A google search for “the baird” produces nothing relevant. The closest to Scotland it comes is John Logie Baird, but he’s not much famous for his poetry.
    – A google search for “the bard” produces William Shakespeare first and Rabbie Burns second. Which is what you’d expect. (Third entry is World of Warcraft. WTF?)
    – Wikipedia calls him the Bard. Though curiously the Scots version calls him neither: . Just Makar, though the entry for Makar describes it as “a poet or bard”.
    – Scots tends to pronounce an “ai” sound where English would put an “aw”/”oh”, as in laird, mair, flair; but doesn’t tend to differ on “a” sounds.

    I’ve never seen it spelled that way before…

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