On my recent visit to London I came across a reference book which featured a handy guide for those who don’t know how to hold a knife and fork, two implements that are fast becoming expendable at the table as the bun, wrap and finger continue their inexorable takeover bid. The skilled use of the pen is passing into history closely followed by the correct use of cutlery, save for the cutlery that is currently popular for crime which neatly transfers from kitchen to street. How you handle your knife and fork says as much about you as the condition of your shoes, or so I’ve been told, even though my shoes are often covered in mud and shit as I live in a region that in winter appears to consist solely of mud and shit. Holding cutlery in the manner of an offensive weapon makes more sense to me than the faux genteel way of the “penholder”. It’s akin to sticking out your pinkie when drinking a cup of tea. How did the penholder happen? Who coached their offspring to hold their knife is such an effete and fucking annoying way? My eyes are unerringly drawn to the hand that penholds. As you may have guessed, dear reader, I am happier at table with foul language, the regular use of the spittoon and possible ground kissing due to excess of falling down water than I am with the flagrant use of the penholder. Call me old fashioned, call me a cuttled bigot, but there it is. It’s out at last and, do you know, I feel better for it.