The Kipper: A Brief History

Great Britain

Kipper: A whole herring, a small, smelly, oily fish that has been split from tail to head along the dorsal ridge, gutted, salted or pickled, and smoked over oak woodchips to produce a slimy, emetic meat some people insist on eating for breakfast. Not to be confused with;

UKipper: A far-right racist also known for its unpleasant smell and slippery skin.

Or perhaps they’re the same. Our future PM Mr Alexander Boris de Pfeffel Johnson waved one at his bemused audience, ranting about fish and blaming the EU for its packaging, which of course turns out to be the usual lie. The Brexit-loving kipper-waggler slammed a British law in the Isle of Man, which is not in the EU, as any fule kno. It’s the UK government, not the EU, that created stupid laws around hated 1950s-style fish. He could have Googled that at the podium, but frankly, why bother?

This is a kipper smoking yard, also known as the House of Commons. Here, many stinky old lies are repackaged in comfy plastic bags marked ‘True Facts’ and sold on to unsuspecting dunces in the shires. Perhaps that sad lady who just announced that she voted Brexit in order to have fish and chips wrapped in newspaper again would like one, although as it’s in a plastic bag she may complain. Luckily, there’s no-one left to complain to.

Is there an oily, smelly politician you’d like to gut from tail to head and stuff with salt on an open fire? When the racist liar Johnson gets together with his hero, the racist liar Trump, there’ll be lots more ‘kippers’ for everyone, and every neighbourhood will have a kipper detention centre!

A caption for the photo? Mine would be from the kipper, thinking: ‘Oh God, how embarrassing, I’m on with Boris Johnson!’

19 comments on “The Kipper: A Brief History”

  1. Helen Martin says:

    Are they related to the “kippered herrings” which come in flat tins and which can be creamed and served on toast?
    We’re having an election this fall so I’m sure there will be numerous Canadian candidates for your smoking yard. I did almost have a fit listening to the news over the last couple of days.

  2. Ian Luck says:

    I love kippers – they are definitely an acquired taste. By far the best, is the peerless ‘Arbroath Smokey’, which can only be called such if it comes from Arbroath. That ruling will disappear once we leave the EU., and any Tom, Dick or Harry will be able to market their substandard fish as such. The ‘Protected Geographical Indicator’, which means that a foodstuff can only be made within a certain distance of it’s point of origin. Stilton cheese cannot be called ‘Stilton’ if it is made in Stilton, Cambridgeshire – that was where it was first served up to lucky travellers. It’s made in the vale of Belvoir (pronounced of course, as ‘Beaver’), in Leicestershire. Melton Mowbray pork pies as well. Newcastle Brown Ale – never call it ‘Newky’ – it’s nickname is ‘Dog’, as in ‘I’m out to see a man about a dog’, and should be ordered thus:
    “Gis a borrel o’ Dog, pet.”(only if there’s a lady behind the bar, as a smack in the teeth often offends), used to carry the indicator symbol proudly, when it was brewed in Newcastle. When it moved breweries, the accreditation was lost. The P.G.I. can be seen as a mark of quality, but one I fear will vanish shortly. A fate I wish on that bumbling, shit-for-brains, lying weeble we now have as P.M. I’m not a fan – could you guess?

  3. Roger says:

    Arbroath Smokies aren’t kippers, Ian Luck: they’re haddock and salted before they’re smoked and don’t need to be cooked before they’re eaten.
    I’m sorry that Christopher’s usually excellent taste has deserted him over kippers: properly cooked they are very good indeed, as are their rarer cousins, bloaters, buckling and red herring – or even ordinary herring. The interesting thing about Johnson and his admirers here is that he paid no attention to the facts – any of the facts – and made no attempt to find them out and they don’t seem to care.

  4. Liz Thompson says:

    Caption for photo spot on. Any self respecting kipper would shrivel up, turn brown, and die at the sight of Boris heaving into view.

  5. Andrew Holme says:

    Your Molesworth ref made me look up what Nigel has to say about boys who go to Eton,
    ” YOU MUST HAVE PATIENCE. In 3 years you can despise EVERBODE the LOT….you are still in the thames valley then you can put your shoulder against a wall and achive o but less than nothing.”
    Nige also writes a latin play called ‘The Hogwarts’. Now, why does that ring a bell?
    Ian — I remember another name for Newcastle Brown being, ‘journey into space.’

  6. Peter Dixon says:

    I once saw a man enter The Market Lane tavern in Newcastle, walk up to the bar and, slapping down a pound coin, utter the single word ‘Dog’. He was duly given a bottle of Brown and the correct glass – or schooner as they are called. Not another word was spoken, possibly making it the shortest transaction in history.

    My friend owns a hotel in Northumberland with its own smoke house. A fortnight ago I breakfasted on the finest, freshest, plumpest kipper I’ve had in my life – sheer bliss with brown bread and butter.

    Mind you, I also enjoy Bombay Duck , which is a dried fish but I assume its called a ‘duck’ because it tastes fowl.

    Can’t get a taste for Boris though.

  7. Denise says:

    Yarmouth was known for its kippers and bloaters. My Dad’s garage was a former smoke house.. it think it’s a pity to use a delicacy to describe useless politicians.

  8. Denise says:

    Stupid took I out…

  9. Denise says:

    Phone , ..

  10. Peter Tromans says:

    British Rail kippers for breakfast on the train from Chester to London. What a delight!

  11. eggsy says:

    Not only an un-fact-checked story, but he admits having been fed the fish by “a national newspaper editor”. For some reason the image of a performing seal comes to mind.
    PGI – all EU regs have been voted into UK law (at least pro tem) in one of the very few examples of them in Westminster behaving like grown-ups over the whole business. To ensure the bits you like stay in UK law, vote. They are, after all, supposed to be answerable to Joe Public, and the snap election rumoured to follow swiftly on the heels of de Pfeffel’s, er, assumption of power seems to be a good time to remind them of that. (Mind you, recent electoral assumptions have been unreliable, to say the least). Anyone any idea what the unwritten constitution indicates would happen if the PM lost his seat?

  12. Ian Luck says:

    I know about Arbroath Smokeys. As usual, my mind works faster than my finger. Different type of fish entirely, and I meant to put that they were nicer than yer bog-standard Kipper. I’ve enjoyed enough of them in the past. There was an annoying bloke at work, and If I found he was on after me, I’d microwave some kippers for my dinner. He stuck passive-aggressive ‘Post It’ notes everywhere – I cooked kippers. I enjoyed my kippers, but he was one of that sadly not rare breed, ‘The Jobsworth’. Every company has one.

  13. Roger says:

    If Johnson was “fed the fish by “a national newspaper editor”, eggsy, it confirms his stupidity. Given the number of lies he fed newspaper editors he should either have known of their gullibility or expected them to retaliate when they had the chance.

    Did you try microwaving your colleagues passive-aggressive ‘Post It’ notes, Ian Luck?

  14. Chuck says:

    I’m a Yank who has never eaten a kipper, so I have no idea whether your hilarity-inducing description of it is accurate. But even if it is, a kipper still sounds like an improvement on Johnson or his American partner in slime (who, in Lovecraftian fashion, Must Not Be Named). Heaven know whether or not our once great nations will survive the onslaught of these low-budget Big Brother knockoffs. Meanwhile, I guess we can take refuge in comedy.

  15. Helen Martin says:

    We (Canadians) have an election in the fall so perhaps we can elect another and we’ll have a trifecta of slimeballs.

  16. Ian Luck says:

    Andrew -That’s a new one to me, but I can see how the beer got that epithet. Newcastle Breweries used to produce a fantastically good (and moreish) beer called ‘Amber Ale’ which they stopped producing just as I was telling people how damn good it was. Typical. Viz Comic had a perpetually hammered superhero called ‘The Brown Bottle’. To change from his ‘secret identity’ of Barry Brown, into ‘The Brown Bottle’, he necked a bottle of Dog. His main adversary was the tramp – like ‘Cider Woman’, a perpetually drunk and swearing old lady.

  17. Peter Tromans says:

    Chuck, the reason that you’ve never eaten a kipper is because someone, probably the potential US importer, decided that they were too small for US plates. This was back in 1946 in New Orleans. Maybe kippers were smaller just after the war as the times that I’ve been to New Orleans plates seemed to be much the same as everywhere else….

  18. John Griffin says:

    Whitby kippers straight from the Fortune’s smokehouse on Henrietta St just below the Abbey Steps. Or pay a fortune for the same in restaurants. Mmmmmmmm.

  19. Glasgow1975 says:

    My caption for the pic would be ‘Gammon Kipper’ – and growing up in Arbroath my little Scottish heart is bursting with pride at the praise for the humble ‘Smokie’! Not that I ever touch the foul things 😉

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