It’s not something I’ve ever really thought about before, but making toast is actually pretty difficult.
No one really knows what the numbers on a toaster represent – they’re sure as hell not minutes – and there are so many variables. Every toaster is a law unto itself in terms of the intensity of heat, the distribution of heat, whether it pops automatically or doesn’t (and if it doesn’t what button do you press or do you risk manually dragging it up and breaking the mechanism). Do you flip over between ‘sessions’? What if session one lasts too long to give an equal session to the opposite side without burning the thing? Then you’ve got a lopsided toast. And no one wants a lopsided toast.
And then there are those conveyor belt ones you get in hotels, which frankly are a complete bloody lottery. One journey round: not enough. Two journeys: smoke alarms going off all over the shop.
But no matter the difficulty in achieving the desired amount of toasting, we should all at least be clear on what we’re all aiming for. Just how brown that burn goes. And we’re all agreed on that, right?
Well, according to this latest – frankly shocking – poll from YouGov, apparently we are not.
Apparently, the great British public which, if it should know about one thing in this godforsaken world, should know the correct preparation of the most crucial breakfast element there is, apparently do not have a bloody clue.
Just take a moment to hold in your mind a mental snapshot of the myriad glories this nation has been involved with in its history - constantly punching above its weight, bringing culture to the world, inventing football and cricket – and then compare and contrast that with the absolute disgrace of an image that lies below.
I feel like ripping my eyes out so I need never look at this again.
Now, obviously Toast 1 is a joke – that’s just bread mate and Toast 5 is a carcinogenic nightmare; to clarify - because it seems now that we need to clarify the clearly absurd now – that toast is severely, and hideously, burnt. All you’ve done there is convert bread to carbon, and I’d rather not eat coal if it’s all the same with you guys. I’m not from the north.
Those two variants were clearly put there to eliminate the clinically insane, so the great British public were basically left with a choice between three types of toast.
Toast 2. How to put this. But this is an insult to everything Britain stands for. Look at it. It’s like a piece of bread that’s looked at a toaster, thought “not sure about this”, edged closer, and then at the first sign of any heat has turned away and declared “nah, it’s not for me mate”. To be fair, that does describe a lot of Brits any time the sun comes out.
But come on, 19% of the public voted for this? You disgust me. You clearly have no backbone and if war came – which it might – you would last about as long on the front line as this piece of bread lasted in the toaster.
Toast 3. The ‘winner’. Over half the public voted for this. I will acknowledge that this is at least ‘toast’. Congratulations on that, you’ve voted for something as the best at something simply for being that something. You’ve voted for Brexit means Brexit haven’t you.
This is toast. Just toast. This is not good toast. This will crunch… a bit. It will not satisfy your inner toasty desires. It’s fine. This is the Ed Sheeran of toast. And that is not good enough.
Toast 4. This is toast. This is glorious, crunchy, toasted, toasty, a hint of burn, but resolutely unburnt toast. When you bite into this bad boy it doesn’t lie back and think of England, it puts up a bloody fight. It stands strong. You want to get through this slice of toast easily? Think on my friend. This absolute lad of a toast will hit back at you. It will put its bready fists up, yelling “come on mate, I can take it, bite me again! Bite me again!” and you will do as it says, gorging yourself before arriving at a state of toasty ecstasy. This toast has done his time in the furnace and come through with its pride intact.
This is a soldier.
Actually, this is a soldier.
But this is a piece of toast.