The markets here are fabulous. I make a weekly trip to The South Melbourne Market. The produce, meats, seafood and specialty stores are great finds. It’s so much bigger than our weekly farmers’ markets in nearby towns. It’s so much more of an establishment and an understood standard that you purchase local, not necessarily organic.
Here comes my blunder.
The metric system is something the whole world should use. We don’t. We learned it in middle school. We forgot it in college. Whenever I buy meat from the butcher I avoid using this very simple metric system. I say, “3 chicken breasts” or “4 sausages” or “that roast looks good.” For Easter I am roasting a leg of lamb and wanted an approximate weight. Knowing that approximately 500 grams equals 1 pound and continuously running it through my mind while waiting for my turn I am nervous. Think of those times that you waited in line at 2am for Wiener Circle in Chicago or for a cheese steak in Philadelphia. You better get it right or face public humiliation. Its my turn. The leg of lamb.
Butcher: “How much do you want?”
Mom with 2 toddlers gorging themselves with hot cross buns, obviously means business: “Um, let me think… 1 lb = 500 grams, and I need 6 lbs… do you have one that is…” I think out loud, by the way. “Um, 3000 grams?” Wait, 3000 grams sounds like a lot of meat.
Butcher: “You mean 3 kilos?”
Crap. I’ve been found out. It was as if I channelled Austin Powers, placed my pinky next to my lips and exclaimed “One, Miilllliioooon Dollars.” Who orders 3000 grams of lamb? Me, I did.
Mom with 2 toddlers gorging themselves with hot cross buns, obviously mean business: “Riiight, kilos. Sorry, just not thinking today.” I lightly tap my head. Phew, got out of that one. Does he think I really forgot about kilograms? Nah. Does he think I’m one of those Americans? Probably. I really did forget about those darn kilos.
I wish I had market pictures to post but when I go I am armed with a list, a time limit, 2 toddlers needing sultanas (raisins), sugar and bread, and a prayer. Oh wait, and a metric conversion table.