We are a Two Therm- Household

Mark is much exercised in the summer months over a knotty and persistent problem in our household.  It’s not whether or not to slap sun-block all over (we solved that one years ago and the answer is no), nor is it where to go on our hols, since last year all we managed was a freezing weekend in a tent in Derbyshire; neither has it to do with what to grow in the garden, since up to now that has been my department.  Incidentally, one of the things I want when we move is a decent garden, large enough to grow more than a strip of potatoes and a few toms in pots.  But none of these occupies the brain of Mark, for these problems are far too practical to interest him.  No!  It is the problem of the thermos, and more specifically, what to call it when you have more than one.  What is the plural of thermos? he wails, day after day consulting the internet and haranguing passers-by, but to no avail.  It really ruins his life, not knowing, because every time we go on a picnic or a day out, we take our two flasks (see how I neatly side-stepped the problem there?) which of course are the hardy metal variety; the ‘military strength’ sort which only dent when dropped and don’t shatter inside leaving an explosion of tiny bits of glass.  And how can he refer to them if he doesn’t know what the plural is?  How can he ask me if I’ve got them or whether we are taking them or what we should put in them or which bag they are in?  How can life progress?

We’ve tried various alternatives.  We’ve used ‘thermon’, ‘thermoi’, ‘thermous’ – and just for a laugh, ‘thermopylae’, but none of these seems quite right.  So I’m sending you this plea: during the winter months, while you put out food for birds and check bonfires for hibernating hedgehogs, can you spare a thought for Mark’s coming torment and tell us: what is the plural of ‘thermos’?

Post your suggestions below…

Meanwhile, in my thermos-free world, today I shall be mostly… going to Embrace Arts for a workshop in which three writers including Lydia Towsey are talking about their work.  And this evening is our monthly Left Unity meeting.  See you at one or other – or maybe both!

Kirk out


4 thoughts on “We are a Two Therm- Household

    1. That’s too easy for Mark! I don’t have a problem – I call them Thermoses or flasks. I don’t call them Thermos flasks, although I think it’s perfectly acceptable because it’s a bit long-winded and some aesthetic part of my brain objects to long-windedness. But Mark just gets stuck in a loop whenever he thinks about it. I guess that’s because he’s loopy…

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