Transcript: Fishy business
Britain has a long history as a fishing nation. Yet many blame the decline of this industry on EU regulations relating to fishing quotas and control of local waters. As with most things to do with Brexit, what exactly will happen after next March isn’t clear. Colin Beaven takes a humorous look at the issue in Britain Today.
If you want to eat fish here in Britain, the supermarkets generally give you a choice between haddockSchellfischhaddock and codKabeljaucod. There’s also salmonLachssalmon, to be fair, and perhaps even soleSeezungesole. But the British aren’t adventurous with food from the sea; they stick with sth. (ifml.)bei etw. bleibenstick with what they know.
It’s not like in France, where limitless sorts of fish are eaten. It almost feels as if they keep inventing new ones. But they, too, have their favourites. In fact, one French word for the fish we call hakeSeehechthake is colin. So before I say my name, I check that there’s nobody near me with a big knife and fork.
Hake is truly delicious, and you actually see it more and more on British menus. To make it more attractive, it’s often described as “Cornishaus Cornwall, kornischCornish hake”. This has several advantages. It sounds more local than something that’s been to drag overherbeizerrendragged over from Iceland. It sounds patriotic, since Cornwall’s part of Britain. And it also sounds romantic; you think of the wild Cornish coastline and pretty little fishing boats that sail from sleepy villages.
But how do we know it’s really Cornish? There are different kinds of hake, and they live all over the world. Your hake may have been caught off Cornwall, but how do you know it didn’t swim across from Ireland. Or even France?
You can’t really test it by saying hou or durdadhehwei. That’s “hello” and “good day” in Cornish. It’s not that the Cornish language is dead. True, the Cornish stopped speaking it in the 18th century, but the language has now been to revivewiederbelebenrevived. It’s alive and well, unlikeanders alsunlike the hake they serve you in restaurants.
We’ll never know how the hake saw itself: proudly Cornish? Or British? Or European? Possibly proudly all three? The last of these is unlikely; negotiations about Brexit have been far too frustrating. Hake are probably so demoralized that they’ll be leaving Cornwall altogether. They’ll swim off to be citizens of a country where fish feel more at home: FinlandFinnland („fin“ bedeutet „Flosse“)Finland. It certainly has the most fish-friendly name in the EU.
What’s made Brexit so difficult? Its supporters have been asking the impossible. They’ve wanted the benefitVorteil, Nutzenbenefits of being in the EU (trade) and the benefits of not being in the EU (the power to stop millions of EU citizens moving to Britain). It doesn’t work. You can’t to have one’s cake and eat itauf zwei Hochzeiten tanzen, alles habenhave your cake and eat it.
That’s an old saying that children find hard to accept when they hear it from parents and teachers. What’s the point of cake, they say, if you can have it but not eat it? Well, that’s life, comes the response. Welcome to the real world.
Perhaps Brexiteers — those are the people who want to leave the EU — have been childish. They wanted to have their hake and eat it.
Hake simply won’t to put up with sth.hinnehmen, ertragenput up with it. They’ll leave the seas off Cornwall, and we’ll miss them when they’ve gone. There’s basically only one thing to be said about Brexit: it’s all been a terrible missed hake(klingt wie: „mistake“)missed hake.