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More fascinating useless bits courtesy of the internet

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More fascinating useless bits courtesy of the internet

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DianaReidthinkyou'recrazy
Okay, so, I've got the flu, which means I'm mostly banished to my room, so I don't breathe germs on eternaleponine, but last night, she IMs up to me (what? of COURSE we IM from room to room. We will not discuss the occasions on which we IM although WE ARE SITTING RIGHT NEXT TO EACH OTHER) "The Doctor is going to meet Agatha Christie." When I ascertain that she means RIGHT NOW, and that she is willing to risk me coughing all over everywhere, I go downstairs to watch.

Leaving aside any petty criticisms of the episode, it reminded me that I had some Agatha Christies on the bookshelf, courtesy of goddessfarmer, and that was probably well suited to my focus level (fever brain, also probably oxygen-deficient from all the coughing), so I grabbed The Tuesday Club Murders and took it upstairs to read while I took a nice hot bath. With all of a LUSH Marathon bubble bar in it. Cinnamon. Warming. Good for flu, right? Also, unlikely to dump glitter all over the tub, and I was in no mood for glitter.

Well, in the first story (published 1928), "The Tuesday Night Club," it was mentioned that one character was "banting." From context, it was clear that she was dieting; however, I was a bit curious about the word itself.

You know what it is?

19th-century Atkins.

I AM NOT KIDDING.

Now the only mystery left is what on EARTH was that "bowl of cornflour" requested by the character with the upset stomach? I know "cornflour" is Britglish for "cornstarch," but it can't just have been a bowl of powder. Cornstarch-thickened milk pudding, maybe? It doesn't sound very digestion-soothing to me, but I know that custards were historically thought of as good food for invalids, so.

erastes, kay_taylor, or any other Brits on my list? Can you shed any light on the subject?

ETA: Okay, more choosy Googling suggests it really WAS just a cornstarch-and-water paste. The "banting" character must REALLY have been craving carbs like a maniac to be willing to drink THAT. Gross!
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