Bring and buy
When I was young, a popular fund-raiser was the "bring and buy" sale. The idea was that
some items of arts and crafts would be brought to an event and donated, while the same
people would buy those things brought by others for a suitable price, the whole of the
proceeds going to some worthy cause.
Mrs. Henderson always brought along some meringues, which my mother said were over-cooked,
because they were often slightly brown instead of white, but they were the only meringues I
ever had until much later in life. As adults, my wife and I moved to New Zealand. One of the
main reasons for doing so was pavlova: similar to but greatly superior to meringue.
However, that's not what I should be talking about here: it's easy to get the right word if
you stick to the present tense: bring or buy; on the other hand, there are so many people who
can't tell the right one in the past tense: brought or bought.
It's conusing because if you bought something, you probably brought it home afterwards, but
it still catches people out. After a hard day of shopping, you probably brought your children
home: it is unlikely that you bought them. However, if you bought them an ice-cream they may
have brought that home.
Be careful which word you use: you are probably not doing anything wrong when you talk about
what you brought, but it is quite possible that it isn't what you meant.
Bring and buy sales seem to have been replaced by sausage sizzles and garage sales, but there
is still nothing to touch a good pavlova.
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