The catchy upper windows at this cafe caught my attention in Idle. The steamy windows hinted at a warm welcome to augment the smiley faces. It was then that the name sank in and I thought a drop of tea would be what I got if I wasn’t careful.
I played cricket for Idle Congs in the 1960’s and was having a nostalgia walk to see how the village had changed – not much although some licensed premises were shuttered and closed, only temporarily I hope. Over 50 years ago I probably thought I was a good fielder and claimed many catches to my name but perhaps I was not so good more like my batting and bowling. Still I don’t remember being called butter-fingers all that often.
I was interested in the derivation of the name Butterfingers and extrated this note from a larger item on the subject at http://www.phrases.org.uk/meanings/butterfingers.html
Before Charles Dickens used the phrase in Pickwick Paper there was a reference to ‘butter-fingers’ in the Yorkshire newspaper The Leeds Intelligencer dated May 1823.
‘The English Housewife. Delving again, I found that the book, written by the English writer Gervase Markham in 1615, scarce as it may have been in 1823, is still available today. Markham’s recipe for a good housewife was:
‘First, she must be cleanly in body and garments; she must have a quick eye, a curious nose, a perfect taste, and ready ear; she must not be butter-fingered, sweet-toothed, nor faint-hearted – for the first will let everything fall; the second will consume what it should increase; and the last will lose time with too much niceness.’
Here’s the tea pot short and stout
Here’s my handle here’s my spout
pick it up and ooops – butterfingers