Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Formerly Burma; Still Using the English System

I know, of course, that the metric system is better than the English system. I understand that it’s decimal-based, making math easy. And I know it’s a pain to learn how many tablespoons in a cup, how many ounces in a pound, and how many feet in a mile.

But I did. I learned all those things. I know how long it takes me to walk a mile, and what to wear when it’s 70 degrees Fahrenheit. And so it’s fairly grudgingly that I’ve been educating myself about the metric system.

I used to tell myself that I needed to do this because the rest of the world does. But I just discovered that’s not quite true. Liberia and Myanmar (what you call Burma) also persist in using pounds and inches. And the E.U. recently granted England special permission to use their own system in certain circumstances. (Which seems a little condescending; no wonder they don’t like to think of themselves as part of Europe.) So for now, if you’re going to walk a mile in someone else’s shoes, do it in Burma, Liberia, or an English pub.

2 comments:

Don Clausing said...

That was a good one. I'm reminded that, "A pints a pound the world around."

Nicole said...

I'm going to order a pound of beer the next time I'm in England. I can't wait to see what happens.