But it wasn't until I'd spent considerable time in Commonwealth countries that I realized that the produce aisle of the grocery store could be a conundrum. Care to hazard a guess what ROCKET is?
(I particularly love the way it says WILD rocket. It sounds so daring!)
How about COURGETTES?
How about CHICORY? (And no, my New Orleans loving friends, it's not that stuff in the coffee at Cafe du Monde.)
But the strangest one in my opinion is BEETROOT.
Yes, yes, know it's almost the same as the word beet, but here's my beef with it. Why add the root part? Why not just beet? I mean, they don't say onionroot or carrotroot or turniproot. Just beetroot. And they're crazy about the stuff. I've frequently seen beetroot soup, beetroot salads, and beetroot juice. I even saw beetroot as an ingredient on a burger at McDonald's in Australia once (the McOz - seriously).
And when I ask people why they add the root part only on to the word beet, I get the same reaction every time. They look at me quizzically and admit that the inconsistency has never occurred to them. They unanimously agree that it doesn't make any sense at all. One lady even told me today that when they refer to sugar beets, they don't say sugar beetroot. Go figure. So I guess while I'm here I'll adopt the British names for things. Because if you can't BEET 'em, join 'em, right?