Tidbits in Type -Volume One

Ever find yourself reading a book only to stop occasionally and look something up that the author referenced? I love adding more to my understanding of a story by knowing the meaning of obscure word, or finding an image of a particular item.

I’ve always done this to some degree. Lately, while re-reading my all-time favorite books series, Outlander, by Diana Gabaldon, I found more things to look up. Being of Scottish heritage, I find a lot that is referenced in the books fascinating. I imagine my ancestors in similar times or circumstances.

One of the words I just had to find the description of is “frowsty”. My mother always used the word “frowzy” when describing one of kids if our hair was a mess. In the eighth book of the series, “Written in My Own Heart’s Blood”, Roger and William wake up “frowsty”. Such a close word to the one my mom used (and still uses). Frowzy means scruffy and neglected in appearance. Frowsty means having a stale, warm and stuffy atmosphere but is derived from frowzy and musty. It’s little similarities to heritage when reading books such as these that endear them to me further.

Another thing I had to look up was “Irn Bru”. In the same book, Bree was in a roadside cafe. After having a less than decent cup of tea, she suggested to the person who joined her at the table, “Don’t order the tea.” Taking her word for it, he ordered, “…a bacon butty and an Irn Bru”.

Irn Bru is to Scotland what Coca-Cola is to Atlanta, Georgia. Originally created in 1901, has developed into a proud national brand with strong marketing campaigns that rival Coca-Cola and Pepsi. Referred to as Scotland’s “other national drink.” In my quick research, I found the Irn Bru tartan, recipes, and even funny memes.


I’m going to have to find some now and give it a try. There are many places in the states where it can be purchased, and thanks to Amazon, nearly anything is accessible. (While you’re at Amazon, order yourself a copy of Outlander by Diana Gabaldon and start your love affair.)




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